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Team Benefit during ‘Not Knowing’

During which decision-making situations can teams be of particular benefit for organisations? Decision-making theory can identify five particularly important ones. Here is one of the five:

There are decisions which are characterised by not being clear about

• which knowledge is necessary for a foundation
• who has this knowledge,
• where this knowledge can be found in the organisation or externally and
• how one can prepare this knowledge appropriately for the decision.

In such situations, teams are, therefore, better than other formats for finding a decision because

• with appropriately shaped interaction patterns it is substantially easier to admit to not-knowing together and to be able to bear it, rather than to escape behind pretend security or paralysis.
• the variety of team members’ relationships accelerates the search movements into the new and unknown
• mindfulness for weak signals can be particularly well cultivated in teams
• over-hasty conclusions and contentedness can be made more difficult through argument and counter-argument in teams
• there is a shared ‘memory’ for ‘over-hastily’ discarded alternatives, in as much as the chosen direction turns out to be unsuitable. In this way the past can be more easily re-mobilised for a future present.