Leadership and decision making often go hand-in-hand. People lead in various ways, and leadership styles are important in decision making. Your students must learn to use their leadership skills to influence and impact others. They must also learn how to persuade others to understand and support their decisions as a leader.

student success

In this post, we will look at the following topics related to leadership and decision making:

  1. Consider context
  2. Risk tolerance
  3. Negotiating
  4. Visualization

Consider context

Teach your students to consider context. Leaders and decision makers both understand that all situations are different. It can be fatal to a team or organization to treat each situation and solution in the same way. Just because a solution worked for one problem does not mean that it will work for the next. This is why it is important to avoid applying rules of thumb or standard rules to all situations.

Instead of applying rules across the board, tell your students to treat each situation as unique and make decisions based on the specific circumstances. By considering the context of each situation or problem, they will be more likely to make a correct decision.

Risk tolerance

A large part of being a leader involves risk-taking. To lead others, your students will often have to go outside of their comfort zones and take risks. When faced with decisions, they may need to make choices that have never been made before. This means risking failure.

Tell your students that they might make an incorrect or an unpopular decision. Whatever the case, leaders have to take on the risk of making poor or wrong decisions. Good leaders and decision makers stand behind their choices and take responsibility for them. They are not afraid to take responsibility for their decisions, whether they turn out to be right or wrong.


Negotiation, trying to reach an agreement or compromise, is a key element in obtaining agreement in the decision-making process. Negotiation occurs when two parties disagree on a solution for a problem. In this situation, both sides must work together to reach an agreeable solution. This requires negotiators to have both interpersonal skills and communication skills. They must also have patience and an ability to lead others to come to a desired outcome. It is important that they also maintain a positive attitude as this will make it easier to find a solution.

Teach your students these tips regarding negotiations:

  • Never bargain when fear rules.
  • Always ask yourself, “Who is getting apprehensive?” (It may be you!)
  • Allow negative feelings to subside.
  • Always let your opponent be a winner, too.
  • Take time to smile. Let the other person wonder why you’re doing it.



To help your students become good decision makers, have them practice visualization. Visualization is the process of seeing things happen in your mind. When you are able to visualize a situation, it strengthens your ability to be more creative and to realize that there are several possible solutions for every problem.

Visualization allows you to practice with new information. The practice will help build new skills and attitudes. You will learn to see a problem in your mind and create the results that you want. Once you practice this process, it will become a part of you, and you will use it in real life situations, just like any other habit that you have formed.

Thank you for tuning into our series on decision making. If you would like to learn more about teaching success skills to your students, sign up for a free soft skills webinar here.