Decision: Tools for X

We all use tools to help us in business or life.  What factors should I consider when I’m faced with an important tool selection decision?  How can I avoid being “snowed” by a salesperson’s pitch and by the gleaming (but not terribly useful) features that the tool tempts me to focus on?  I have to chuckle when I watch most automobile commercials; they seem to be selling computers, communications and entertainment systems “on-wheels” more than transportation!

Here’s a criteria pattern that you can use when facing a tool selection decision.  Although this specific decision has been framed for a business toolset that supports the delivery of a service to customers, the same kinds of criteria apply to tools for personal use.

Criteria for a Tool Selection Decision

Criteria for a Tool Selection Decision

I think the key to tool decisions is to focus first on useful and relevant functionality, not a long list of features (many of which you may never use for the mission you have in mind).  A great tool will save you time and effort while delivering outstanding results while helping you do important things.  It will match your skills and way that you like to work.  It won’t cost you an arm and a leg to buy, start using and to operate over the long haul.

For a complex business tool decision, I expect that you would split the High Performance and Functionality factors into multiple performance metrics and functions/capabilities to match the task at hand.

I have used these criteria as I have designed and refined the various software tools that have become the building blocks the Decision Driven® Solutions Framework (DDSF), a unique set of web services for decision management, proactive decision-making, innovation and strategic alignment. The greatest challenge I’ve faced is that I’m delivering new-to-the-world functionality; integrated, holistic, proactive management of the decisions that will create your future, all based on proven decision patterns.  I guess I need a tool that will make you wake up in the morning and ask “How can I better manage and make the decisions that will create my future?”

To apply the tool selection decision pattern to your next project, please contact the Decision Driven® Solutions team at or to start your free trial of DDSF.


About decisiondriven

Innovator in Decision Management, Systems Thinking and System Engineering methods and tools
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