Category Archives: Uncategorized

How to make better decisions

Managers need guidance to make better decisions.

Managers need guidance to make better decisions.

Managers at all levels struggle with decisions. And, get this, research on managers across the country continues to validate this.

The decision making ability comes down to knowing how and having a culture that supports it.

Did you know that …

  1. 98% of managers fail to apply best practices in decision making.  Forbes.
  2. 82% of managers have no ability to hold others accountable.  Partners in Leadership.
  3. Decision making effectiveness is 95% correlated with financial performance. Bain Research. 
  4. A good decision framework can “drive 75% better decisions, 2x faster, with 1/2 the meetings and 20% better performance.” Forbes. Erik Larson. HBR. 

Managers need to know how to make better decisions and need the cultural structure around them to execute successfully.

Knowing how to make decisions

It relies on training. First, managers need training so they know the process of decisions. Then they need practice. Lastly, they need mentoring and coaching to build the skills.

What exactly is involved in a good decision?

That depends on the goals of the company. It depends on its metrics, culture, and guidelines for decisions.


A good set of decision metrics comes from Bain Research.

Measure what you manage.
  1. Quality:  Choose right course of action.
  2. Speed:  How quickly do you make a decision?
  3. Yield:  How often do you execute decision as intended?
  4. Effort:  Do you put the right amount of effort into making and executing on a decision.

In addition, making a decision rarely affects only one person. Collaboration, accountability, communication, cooperation all come into play.

A culture to support better decisions

What exactly does culture have to do with making better decisions?

The best, most practical, to-the-point definition of culture is “the way we do things around here.” 

  • How we correct each other when mistakes are made. 
  • How we congratulate each other on successes.
  • Boundaries we just do not cross. 
  • How we disagree and come to agreements. 
  • How we communicate informally and formally. 
  • The degree of openness we accept.

To clarify, it becomes important a culture includes a management team that walks the talk. A management team that lives and breaths the decision making culture.

5 guidelines to make better decisions

Here a few quick guidelines:

  1. Consistency is crucial. Intent must match actions and must match results. So, if intent is in place and action appears to match but results don’t happen, then something is broken. It’s time to fix it.
  2. Code of behavior. This code guides the consistency.  The code helps prioritize behaviors, actions, each decision. 
  3. Communicate goals.  Goals must be clearly stated and assigned. Specific, measurable and attainable. 
  4. Roles clearly defined.  Ambiguity in roles will crush decision making. Saving the day, micromanaging blur the lines of responsibility and push the role back on the person saving the day. 
  5. Decision Framework.  A clean decision framework guides the manager through the most difficult decisions. It guides them through everyday ones. 

Now, put these into place and start making better decisions.

Need help making better decisions with your teams and emerging leaders?

Contact Phil Bride today. 503-753-9971 or

A conversation is easy and there is no obligation.

Happy Thanksgiving to all

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Enjoy and be thankful for everything we have.

Best to all.  Phil Bride

Are you a leader or not? 5 questions–5 levels–5 rules

Know yourself well. Your strengths, talents, and blind spots.

Are you a leader or not?

Are you a leader or not? Yes or no.

Are you a leader or not?
Yes or No.

Have you ever wondered just what kind of leader you are? How good are you at leading?

By now we’ve all pretty much accepted that leadership has nothing to do with role or title. Leadership is much deeper.

It’s not so much whether you are a leader or not, you are. The question is about your leadership skills, knowledge and attitudes.

Trevor, a senior manager at a high tech company, and I met at a business mixer. Trevor’s company is going through growth spurts with flat growth for awhile then high growth. He has several direct reports now.

Trevor is worried that his “learn as you go” approach to becoming skilled at leadership is not going to cut it for very long. He’s starting to ask himself the right questions.

These 5 questions Trevor asked are good. They are not the only questions you might ask, but a good place to start.

  1. What level of leader am I?
  2. What affect does my style and attitudes have on others?
  3. How can I become more effective?
  4. How can I learn to delegate effectively?
  5. What does “to be effective” really mean?

We talked for about 20 minutes. I realized he was ahead of a lot of people in that he was asking questions about his own skills and knowledge. The perfect place to start.

Here are some quick guidelines to get Trevor and you started down the right path.

There are 5 levels of leadership as defined by John Maxwell.

  • Level 1: It’s all about position, title and authority.
  • Level 2:Now people start to follow you because of the relationship you’ve developed.
  • Level 3:People follow because of what you’ve done for the organization.
  • Level 4:They follow because of what you’ve done for them.
  • Level 5:They follow you because of who you are and what you represent.

5 rules that exist with leadership

  1. You always start at a low level with each new person, each new project, each new organization.
  2. People respond to you based on the level they see you, not the level you think you are.
  3. You always have to prove yourself in each level with each person.
  4. You cannot skip ahead levels.
  5. You can fall down levels in an instant. It takes time and energy to climb levels.

Your return gposts as you gpost your leadership skills and pay attention to gposting your team. As you move up the levels your leverage gposts.

Are you a leader or not?

Working with a mentor, a coach, an advisor is what the best of the best do to get better.

What are you going to do?

“Dominate your life with Focus, Decision and Execution.”

7 must-ask questions when you want something.

Am I really in this to help or do I just want something from them?

Tell me about your situation?

What are the desired outcomes you want?

Why do you want these?

What happens if you don’t get them?

What does that matter?

What stands in your way to getting them?

If you’re in the habit of thinking about your next statement or how to position yourself asking questions might take some practice.

Try it out. Try it on friends, family members, colleagues.

What are the results?

Personal assessments set a baseline for performance improvements

Assessment options

Carrying out assessments gives you an inside look at behavior and reaction styles that kick in when your organization is in “high velocity” situations. Since most people are in reaction mode most of each day wouldn’t it be good to understand this assessment profile?

Assessments uncover values that drive that behavior in the form of motivations and de-motivators. The best managers know what really motivates their staff. Is it money, a pat on the back, something else? When motivations align with company goals through a reward system the magic can start to happen for both the company and the people.

A well done assessment can also expose you and your staff’s perception preferences that drive your decisions, values and behaviors.

None of these are right or wrong. None are “better or worse” than others. What assessments can do is expose the strengths, talents and hidden blind spots in each person. It gives you the tools to give you and your organization an edge.

How better to form a foundation for strategy execution to gpost your organization than to start with alignment, motivations, and understanding strengths, motivations and blind spots on your team.

Rogue River Consulting offers personal, professional and organizational assessments to help understand the baseline for improved performance and execution.

Personal and team Assessments: Innermetrix Advanced Insights (using DISC, VALUES, ATTRIBUTES assessments) plus debriefs to better understand what this information has to offer to each individual.

Organizational Assessments: The D.I.AL.O.G. Assessment provides a comprehensive perspective of the business based on the criteria for Performance Excellence as used by the Malcolm Baldridge National Quality Program.

< 2019 >
  • 21

    CFMA Webinar: Fraud & Embezzlement

    12:00 pm-1:30 pm

    Join us for this highly popular and complimentary webinar on “Fraud and Embezzlement: Lessons from the trenches.”  Angela Morelock, Forensic CPA presents.

    Every company and manager needs to be aware of this issue. Unfortunately, it’s more prevalent than we would like.

    This is a recorded course. And offers 1.5 CPEs.

    There will be pauses for a facilitated discussion by attendees. A requirement for CPE credits. The event will be facilitated locally at a live venue. The event will be presented to both the in-person attendees at the venue and webinar virtual attendees.

    Fraud can wreak havoc on an organization’s financial performance and undermine business objectives. No business is immune from the risks associated with fraud, and education is the key to prevention. Hear from industry expert, Angela Morelock about insights into the world of internal embezzlement and learn about frequently overlooked prevention tips in this unique, one-hour webinar.

    Participants will learn the following:

    • Realize the red flags warning of embezzlement and fraud
    • Understand the criminal methods used to embezzle from and defraud organizations and tips to protect your business
    • Steps to take if fraud is suspected

    Level: This is a group-internet based program at the Overview Level. No prerequisites or advanced preparation required.

    Who Should Take This Course?  Executives, CFO’s, CPAs, Managers or anyone who may be interested in attending.
    For questions please contact:
    Phil Bride at Co-chair CFMA education committee.

  • 22

    HillHub Guest Speaker Aug

    1:00 pm-2:00 pm
    Hillsboro Chamber
    Hillsboro Chamber of Commerce 5193 NE Elam Young Pkwy, Ste A Hillsboro, OR 97124
    Introducing Office Hours @ HillHub!
    HillHub has grown rapidly since opening in April and we’re excited to announce new programming this month!

    Starting August 21st, we will roll out HillHub Office Hours. Twice a month, we will host a group of business owners and professionals who will provide 1:1 support to entrepreneurs and small businesses. Our office hours providers are experts in various topics, all essential to growing a business.

    Providers will be available during a 1.5 hour window from 10am-2:30pm. You do not need to be a HillHub or Chamber member to attend. All small businesses and entrepreneurs are welcome to attend! We do ask that you register ahead of time to ensure guaranteed time with your chosen provider.

    To attend, please register below with your preferred provider and what time you plan to attend. 

    Register For Office Hours
    Below are our upcoming service providers, a little bit about them and their areas of expertise:

What Clients Say

“After working with Phil, from just one process we cleaned up, we reduced mistakes by 70% and are stacking up cost savings.” —Stan, Construction Business Owner.

“Going through the decision framework helped make a very big decision that was stressing me out. After the decision, I felt a huge sense of relief and our revenue jumped due to better focus.” —Jon, Software Construction Business Owner

“We’ve improved our sales per FTE by 30% once we clarified the gap through the SMART goals and I’m not yet done with Phil’s program!” —Tim, Business Owner

“I recommend that if you want to increase effectiveness, sit down with Phil.” —Michelle, small business owner

Coach Phil

Phil Bride

Professional Business Builder

Executive business coach

It's all about business, development, and execution

Phil Bride, MBA, AIC

Sharpen up

Clarity of direction, confidence in next steps

  • Get a plan you can execute
  • Prioritize like a pro
  • Get control over time

Push to the strategic

Up your game. Make things happen.

  • Set, execute a vision of accomplishment
  • Up your game on leadership
  • Get accountability in place

Align (new) managers

Team alignment—Up to speed quicker

  • Skills development
  • Collaboration
  • Project management


Coaching, training, development, facilitating

  • Professional Development
  • New manager training and development
  • Seasoned manager tune up
  • Strategy and execution
  • Business, Market, Sales planning and execution
Workshops, Classes, 1-on-1