The decision map represents factors at play any time a decision is to be made, whether by an individual or by a group. Each of these factors influences the outcome because it is part of a [Complex Adaptive System], and acts interdependently with the others.
The factors of the decision map are simple to understand and complex to think about.
- World View – comes from the background, education, experiences an individual brings into the decision process
- Rules – create the parameters and expectations for the decision making; may be formal and published or they may be informal and understood intrinsically; and they may be either conscious or unconscious rules
- Reality – that which is actually in front of you; being “in reality” means being conscious of your surroundings and their impact on your life
One gift of the Decision Map is that it helps you understand these factors at all scales of a system—individuals, groups, organizations, and communities. As a model it helps you represent and understand the reality of those factors in decisions at any scale. As a method it helps you consider one map against another: seeing where they align and where they don’t; understanding how differences and similarities manifest themselves in relationships or conflicts; and identifying options for influencing future decisions.