How do you prevent getting burnout? How would you overcome the inability to focus due to distractions? How to find the best time for deep work while also measuring and benchmarking it? How to allow yourself not to be “always-on” during working hours?
The Answer is Personal Decision Intelligence
Your productivity routines and decision-making have evolved into continuous and comprehensive processes. You intuitively know when you are productive. Sometimes, you can trust your intuition but, it can also be wrong.
Nowadays, the process of self-assessment is improved by data-driven technologies that track your daily routines such as sleep and exercise and empower you to make more accurate decisions about many aspects of life.
In this article, you will explore how decision intelligence and your productivity insights go a long way to keeping your performance at its peak and improving your bottom line.
What is Decision Intelligence?
Decision intelligence is a data-driven process that enables you to make fast, more accurate and fact-based decisions rather than relying on intuition.
If stakes are high — for example, when you’re making an important decision, negotiating the best deal or working on a vital part of a project, deep focus on the task at hand underpins success. But how to arrange it? The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) makes the analysis of data available through wearables efficient and reliable. Now, having decision intelligence in the pocket is a possibility for everyone.
Simply put, decision intelligence is a strategic application of AI or ML to make timing and decisions better.
Challenges with Work Arrangements
For all aspects of your life, technology has become more critical than ever. You rely on it from the beginning to the end of the day. The way you work also has shifted dramatically, people struggle to implement hybrid work strategies, and the importance of decision intelligence grows.
A recent study from Unisys has identified that you need more than the latest technology to stay productive in a hybrid workplace. You need to arrange your day strategically.
The study found that 35% of respondents could not focus due to distractions, while at least 20% were less productive when WFH. These show there is a problem with productivity and the ability to concentrate on work, which business professionals must overcome.
However, it is possible to improve productivity by at least 30%. And this means connecting the technology available to everyone and understanding what data-driven intelligence tells you.
Personal Decision Intelligence VS Traditional Approach
KPI, performance, OKR, schedule, plan are standard terms used to describe the goals and processes of teams and individuals. Working towards achieving goals is best when cognitive and physical capacities are at their peak — when focus, creativity and decision making abilities are the highest. However, business professionals still schedule critical tasks and appointments based on instinct and intuition.
Although this outdated approach used to be helpful, the real value lies in an informed decision about the right time for the key tasks or meetings? When you combine your schedule with insights about your ability to execute the most crucial activities, you’ve created personal decision intelligence.
The traditional approach to scheduling only examines time available and sometimes the urgency of a task or a meeting. Prdikt opens an age where a more holistic view of relationships between the personal ability to perform a task (internal) and the importance of this task (external) are required to create real productivity. Productivity strives because of the correct match between the two.
Productivity is the output divided by the input. This traditional view sounds simple and right, right?
Although the definition isn’t wrong, it typically doesn’t consider an individual’s ability to perform the activity. Let’s look at it from two sides of the coin.
A general approach is to track some productivity metrics — for example, the amount of time you’re working or the amount of output you’re producing. Say the most critical task atm is to develop a business case. If analyst A spent 10 hours over three days and found 27 sources while analyst B spent 9 hours over 1.5 days and found 90 sources, their manager could assume analyst B is more productive.
However, analyst A worked on the task during their most productive time — when their intellectual abilities, i.e. focus, were the highest and sources were extremely good. In contrast, analyst B worked during their least productive time — when they couldn’t concentrate and understand the actual source value. As a result, most of those sources were irrelevant.
Which analyst is more productive?
You need to look beyond standard “time available” scheduling and working to increase your productivity. You want to know when your ability to execute will be the highest in the future. Decision intelligence provides you with productivity insights. And Prdikt gives you the ability to foresee your future performance capacity.
Put bluntly, the lack of understanding of your future productivity impacts the quality of all your results, hinders your growth and decreases your chances of promotion.
And while you have good intentions, you make small efforts to improve your future productivity. You simply didn’t know how. Until now.
The Benefits of Using Personal Decision Intelligence
Before we delve into some of the benefits of personal decision intelligence, it is essential to distil the hype: it won’t make every your decision, tasks or appointments better automatically. Instead, it will provide you with insights about when you would have greater performance capacities in the future.
While you will see exact time slots and be able to schedule key activities, the human factor will still determine your productivity — watching series or working on vital parts of a project deliver different value.
Although the AI or ML part of decision intelligence can quickly analyse large amounts of data from multiple sources without being prone to cognitive biases, human validation AND work are still required to maximise the benefits of decision intelligence.
Below are three core benefits of decision intelligence that you can expect.
1. Improved scheduling
60% of best-in-class companies base their decisions on information while “laggard” companies base a worryingly high 70% of their decisions on gut feel, says research. Why should you rely on gut feel and place important meetings and tasks into the unknown future as a business professional?
Using personal decision intelligence improves your productivity by working on the key things at the right for You time. It simply gives you insights into your current and future state.
From now, you can place deep work time or critical meetings to the time when you can focus from your biological standpoint — when your brain and body are ready to provide energy and stay focused for 30, 60 or 90 minutes.
To gain a competitive advantage, be faster, and deliver the highest quality, you have to align your ability to execute and the importance of tasks correctly.
Decision intelligence can take a deeper look at the multiple data sources and find invisible patterns and possible anomalies that can significantly influence improved personal performance.
2. Better decison-making
McKinsey found that only 20% of organisations are happy with their decision-making speed. Other companies admit they waste too much time making the right decision, and ultimately, those decisions weren’t the best ones.
Inside every company are individuals. And it is those professionals who weren’t able to decide on the time and quality. Decision-making is arguably the most critical success factor for anyone. So why do you make decisions on the fly? Why don’t you find the time when your cognitive abilities are at their peak so that you can quickly and efficiently make decisions?
With insights from multiple data sources, you will also be able to increase the base level of your intellectual abilities, making better and faster decision that improves your performance.
3. Increased Team Efficiency and Effectiveness
An average employee spends 4.1 hours a day checking their email. Spending more than 50% of available time is a shocking figure for reading, writing, and managing emails. But was this time productive?
Another study reveals that business professionals in a company of 100 employees spend up to 17 hours a week clarifying their communications. Again, a notable figure.
One of the ways to improve team effectiveness is to improve meeting productivity. But what does it mean? In his book, The Effective Executive, Peter Drucker defined efficiency as doing things right and effectiveness as doing the right thing. Prdikt adds “at the right time” to it.
Successful internal meetings bring everyone together to check-in, communicate challenges, actions and needs and collaborate. At a minimum, meetings should keep everyone on the same page but ideally increase accountability, engagement, and creative problem-solving.
To run meetings well, all members should be in a productive state of mind to bring achievements and triumph, and more importantly, enjoy the accomplishments.
Decision intelligence enables teams to improve their efficiency and effectiveness. If you can find the right time for a better and faster decision about doing the right things and empower your teams to do things right, decision intelligence will have created enormous value for you and your team.
Are You Ready for the Personal Decision Intelligence?
Here at Prdikt, we can help you navigate your professional life and connect the dots between sleep, exercise, mindfulness, diet and their importance for your performance and productivity.
Caitlin D,. 2016. How many hours of your life have you wasted on work email? Try our depressing calculator. Available at: <https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-intersect/wp/2016/10/03/how-many-hours-of-your-life-have-you-wasted-on-work-email-try-our-depressing-calculator>.
Janoschek, N., 2022. How Many Business Decisions Are Based On Gut Feel Rather Than Data?. BI Survey. Available at: <https://bi-survey.com/business-decisions-gut-feel> .
McKinsey & Co, 2019. Decision making in the age of urgency. Available at: <https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/people-and-organizational-performance/our-insights/decision-making-in-the-age-of-urgency>.
Peter F. Drucker, 2017. The Effective Executive: The Definitive Guide to Getting the Right Things Done. Available at: <https://books.google.co.uk/books/about/The_Effective_Executive.html?id=uOYUDAEACAAJ&source=kp_book_description&redir_esc=y>
Stacey H., 2022. Four Steps to Avoid Miscommunication. [online] Available at: <https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/four-steps-avoid-miscommunication-stacey-hanke/>.
Unisys.com. 2022. Experience Parity: Supporting a Resilient Workforce. Available at: <https://digitalworkplaceinsights.unisys.com/home/assets/INFO_2021_DigitalWorkplaceInsights.pdf>.