The six-step decision-making process is called rational decision-making, and it utilizes analysis and facts to make a decision. The steps are defining the problem, identifying the decision criteria, ranking the criteria, developing alternative solutions, evaluating the solutions and selecting the best solution. This decision-making modal makes some assumptions, such as having a clearly defined problem and an ability to identify all possible solutions.
To complete the first step in the rational decision-making process, one must identify the problem and then state the desired outcome after the problem is solved. The next step is to identify the decision criteria by determining what factors are relevant in making the decision. The criteria identified usually reflect the decision-maker's values and personal preferences, and any criteria that is not identified in this step are considered irrelevant to the decision-maker. The third step involves ranking the criteria by determining the priority of each criteria in the decision. Next, potential solutions are developed, but they are not considered. In the fifth step, the decision-maker must critically analyze and evaluate each solution, weighing the strengths and weaknesses of each one based on the criteria established in the second and third steps. The final step concludes the process by rationally and critically selecting the optimal solution.