Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Decision Making Strategies

PMI Method for Decision Making

One way to examine choices is the PMI Method, invented by Edward de Bono. PMI is an acronym for Plus, Minus, Interesting. It takes the Scored Pro & Con a step further by forcing us to think about "what is interesting" about the choice.

• Plus are the pros. What's good about the idea.

• Minus are the cons, the bad points of the idea. And finally,

• Interesting. What is interesting? What are the possibilities?

This chart is especially handy when brainstorming and you have ideas that are not really a pro or a con. Rather, ideas interesting to think about. To calculate your PMI score add up your (Plus) + (Minus) + (Interesting) scores. Items in the "interesting" column can score as a plus or a minus depending on the implication of the thought.

In the example above, the plus score added up to +13, the minus -12, and the interesting column was +3. Added together this idea scores a +4.

While it is easy to think-up why we like or don't like something, we don't usually think about it from the perspective of what is interesting about the idea. Using PMI encourages exploration of possibilities that arise from thinking about it from three directions. It enlarges our view of the situation.

(Via: Paul Williams, @Idea Sandbox).

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