Requesting more information before making a decision is a perfect tactic for no-decision managers to avoid decision-making. All managers need information and no-decision managers start the process of collecting information in the same way as other managers. However, they go much further and continue requesting information, even when it is no longer relevant to the decision to be made. They have invented three levels of information gathering designed to avoid decision-making, called collectively, ‘incremental information improved.’
The first level is ‘insignificant information.’ This is information that is interesting for the decision, in question, but unnecessary. The volume of information, here, is often significant, because no-decision managers can argue that it is necessary, even when it is clearly not. As the volume increases, so the moment of a decision is delayed.
The second level, ‘ineffective information’, is information which has no direct relevance to the decision under study. It is totally inappropriate to ask for information which is useless to make the decision. No-decision managers request it merely to avoid decision-making.
Finally, the no-decision manager will sometimes request the ultimately absurd level of information: ’inept information.’ This is information which is totally foreign to the decision that needs to be made. This request has an objective of making subordinates extremely angry. It is part of yet another tactic; the most devious used by no-decision managers, and will be discussed in the final posts on this subject.
Normal managers only use indispensible information to make decisions. Most do not even know that the other levels: insignificant information, ineffective information and inept information even exist in a normal business environment.
Effect on subordinates
Most subordinates, by the time their no-decision boss starts asking for these levels of unnecessary information, will realise that the request is just another tactic to avoid decision-making and they will not bother to collect and present it. Those who have not yet realised that their boss is not making decisions will continue to work in frustration and waste their time collecting it.