Effective Decision Making Skills Examples for Your CV

Decision-making skills are what allows you to select the best choice from a set of two or more options. They’re closely related to problem-solving skills, because they involve using reasoning to choose potential solutions and they’re imperative to running any organisation. So having good decision-making skills can help you in every career.

 

So, how should you go about showing your decision-making before you work with anybody, and develop decision-making skills examples for your CV? This guide is a good start. By the time you’re done, you’ll have learned what are decision-making skills, how to develop them, and how to include them on your CV.

 

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Decision making skills on a CV example

 

Jayden Lyons

070 2544 5127

JaydenLyons@teleworm.us

linkedin.com/in/jaylyons

 

Summary

 

Results-oriented general manager with 8+ years of store management experience. Proven track record of finding solutions and making decisions that grow the business—reducing labour costs by 8% and turnover rate by 40%. Ability to hear out client demands allowed 38% increase in sales in the first quarter, and smashing of sales targets by at least 20% YoY. Experienced in managing a team of 120+ and generating sales exceeding £6.1m. Awarded ‘Regional Manager of the Year’ for three consecutive years.

 

Work Experience

 

General Manager

Wood&Leather, Newport

February 2016–Present

  • Harmonised work of 120+ sales staff, by individually controlling the hiring process and schedule creation, reducing the staff turnover rate by 40%.
  • Analysed a wealth of business data to identify unnecessary and doubled work— reducing labour costs by 8% and increased employee efficiency while maintaining quality of service.
  • Heard out client demands and responded accordingly — increased foot traffic by 30% and sales by 38% within the first quarter of work.
  • Received ‘Regional Manager of the Year’ certificate for three consecutive years.
  • Exceeded the sales target by 20% YoY, achieving the level of £6.1m+ last annum.

 

Assistant General Manager

Thrill Store, Cardiff

May 2012–January 2016

  • Resolved 25+ customer complaints per month, maintaining customer satisfaction rate above 97%.
  • Developed local marketing strategy resulting in 25% sales lift.
  • Collaborated with a team of 4 personal coaches to provide 5+ staff training sessions a year.

 

Education

 

B.Sc. Business and Management, 2011–2013

University of Bristol

 

Skills

 

  • Decision-making: Following a consistent method of observation, research, analysis and problem-solving, I was able to confront customer requests and complaints, increasing sales and foot traffic and reducing costs.
  • Active Listening: By hearing out the team and informing my decision-making with the opinions of my front line, I was able to create an environment in which staff turnover reduced by 40%, and efficiency increased.

 

Languages

 

  • Italian—fluent
  • Spanish—beginner

 

Types of decision making skills

 

These transferable skills translate to a range of tasks and occupations, so it’s more than likely that you have fostered them already, and it’s even more likely that you will require them in the future.

 

Even though research shows that 50% of people rely on their gut instinct to make decisions, that’s a hard thing to put across on your CV. It is far more productive to focus on the aspects that can be trained and applied. They’ll provide much better proof of your professional abilities.

 

So let’s get started with a list of examples of decision-making skills that you ought to weave into your CV.

 

1. Interpersonal skills

 

A decision maker who makes decisions based on their intuition, hunch and conviction without hearing people out is a narcissist, not a leader. A decision maker who makes their decisions without explaining them is a tyrant, not a leader. 

 

2. Active listening

 

Even when decisions have to be made by you individually, you cannot make an informed decision without hearing out all the viewpoints. Regardless of how you make decisions, and what decisions you make, and whether you make them yourself or in compromise—you better learn to listen. 

 

And fast. Eliciting key information, or information that would be withheld otherwise is an acute skill that sets apart the most efficient leaders.

 

3. Teamwork

 

There will be times when you need to consider shared decision making. Your ability to collaborate, compromise and reach the best solution as a group, or even sit aside and mediate the different viewpoints, are invaluable components of an executive decision maker.

 

4. Communication 

 

Communication skills are invaluable to any full-package decision maker. 

 

Aren’t these interpersonal skills, too? Yes…and no. You’re going to have to communicate constantly. Many times, you won’t be approaching a specific person or goal in mind, but need to consider the way you communicate decisions in order to achieve full buy-in.

 

First thing to remember is that they are as much about speaking as about listening. The best leaders are skilled at reading the room, and eliciting information and opinions through precise, relevant questioning.

 

5. Persuasion

 

The best leaders and decision makers have a trait in common, they are able to lead people to reach the same conclusions, instead of just presenting them as an obvious fact.

 

By supplying the key information and asking the right questions, you can get everyone on the same page—and they will do it by themselves. This is how you get the team behind any decision that is made.

 

6. Conflict management 

 

Conflict management skills come in when you need to get people behind your decision, by resolving conflicts and objections early. Different from persuasion tailored for taking people off the fence, it is more about anticipating things that might take people very far away from the fence.

 

7. Integrity

 

Decision-making is not only about making the right call at crunch-time. It’s about making those calls again and again. It’s about being trusted every time you make a decision. Integrity is a big part of that trust—leaders unwilling to admit mistakes will not be trusted the next time. 

 

8. Organisational skills

 

Decision-making is not just about pulling the trigger, it’s just as much about organizing what’s going to happen as a consequence, to make sure the outcome is exactly as expected. Work must be planned in a way that’s explained, effective, and has a clear path to the goal.

 

9. Risk taking & improvisation

 

Martin Luther King Jr. improvised the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech. Sometimes going off-script, the hunch, the intuition, the inspiration lead to the best decision. Best decision makers are forged in the 11th hour—when they have very little time left to think.

 

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How to include decision making skills on your CV

 

Once you’re acquainted with the range of components that make up your decision-making skills, it’s time to decide how to write that CV! For most applications, we urge you to follow the classic work experience first model. 

 

1. Start with your CV personal statement

 

The top of every worthy CV is adorned with a CV personal statement, also known as the CV summary. As the attention grabber of your application, it may be the only thing someone skims before deciding to read on. Therefore, you cannot slouch in plugging your decision-making skills here:

 

Decision making skills in the CV summary

 

Results-oriented general manager with 8+ years of store management experience. Proven track record of finding solutions and making decisions that grow the business—reducing labour costs by 8% and turnover rate by 40%. Ability to hear out client demands allowed 38% increase in sales in the first quarter, and smashing of sales targets by at least 20% YoY. Experienced in managing a team of 120+ and generating sales exceeding £6.1m. Awarded ‘Regional Manager of the Year’ for three consecutive years.

 

2. Write a decisive work experience section

 

The work experience section should also be studded with your decision-making skills. This is the most room you will have to elaborate on them. Here are some CV tips on how to get it right.

 

  • You can start with a bullet point for each of the components we listed above. You’re not going to be able to cover all of them, some will end up in the bin, others will be morphed into one. That’s okay. This is all part of the process.
  • Use action verbs to start as many bullet points as possible. Avoid low-effort phrases like ‘responsible for’.
  • Check the job posting for the most required skills and focus on those. Tailor each CV to each position.
  • List notable achievements quantified by numbers, where possible. 
  • No less than 5 bullet points for your most recent job, but limit older ones to 3.

 

Job description with decision making skills

 

Work Experience

 

General Manager

Wood&Leather, Newport

February 2016–Present

  • Harmonised work of 120+ sales staff, by individually controlling the hiring process and schedule creation, reducing the staff turnover rate by 40%.
  • Analysed a wealth of business data to identify unnecessary and doubled work— reducing labour costs by 8% and increased employee efficiency while maintaining quality of service.
  • Heard out client demands and responded accordingly — increased foot traffic by 30% and sales by 38% within the first quarter of work.
  • Received “Regional Manager of the Year” certificate for three consecutive years.
  • Exceeded the sales target by 20% YoY, achieving the level of £6.1m+ last annum.
  • Resolved 25+ customer complaints per month, maintaining above 97% of customer satisfaction rate.

 

3. Decide your education section

 

Well, it’s actually an easy decision, there are some set rules here. If you have 3+ years of experience already, there isn’t really much to be achieved by listing your extracurricular activities from your degree that you started almost a decade ago. Just write down your degree or highest level of education.

 

If you’re fresh out of school and writing a student CV, it’s a good idea to flesh out your CV education section with relevant modules and extracurricular activities. 

 

Decision making skills in the education section

 

Education

 

B.Sc. Business and Management, 2011–2013

University of Bristol

Relevant Modules: Introduction to Risk, Business Decision-Making, Logic, The Scientific Method 

 

Extracurricular activities

 

Captain of University Debating Society, leading to a Top 3 National finish in 2015

Treasurer of the Philosophy Society: Undertook review and readjustment of budget decisions to host regular monthly speaker events at a lower scale instead of one big one every six months—increasing total attendance by 145% at the same budget. 

 

4. Smarten up your skills section

 

The CV skills section should be focused correctly for maximum impact:

 

  • Choose to either add supplementary skills that you haven’t mentioned before, or reiterate your strongest sides.
  • A couple of skills with some elaboration are better than a random list of a dozen skills. You can add a brief statement elaborating your proficiency at said skill. 
  • Include a balanced mix of soft skills and hard skills. 

 

Decision making skills in the skills section

 

Skills

 

  • Decision-making: Following a consistent method of observation, research, analysis and problem-solving, I was able to confront customer requests and complaints, increasing sales and foot traffic vastly and reducing costs.
  • Active Listening: By hearing out the team and informing my decision-making with the opinions of my front line, I was able to create an environment in which staff turnover reduced by 40%, and efficiency increased.

 

5. Include additional sections

 

You have some more decisions to make—regarding additional sections. The perfect CV is not rounded off with an ‘Additional Info’ section filled with a jumble of random facts and activities. Here’s how to stand out:

 

  • List Languages, Certificates and Awards in their own sections, with clear headings.
  • List adequate details about issuers of certificates or awards.
  • Make sure any private interest, such as a CV hobbies and interests section is relevant to the impression you’re trying to make. 

 

Decision making skills in the extra sections

 

Certifications

 

  • Decision-Making and Risk — Coventry University MBA module (via FutureLearn)

 

Languages

 

  • Italian (fluent)
  • Spanish (beginner)

 

How to improve your decision making skills

 

First, kudos for striving to be better. Now it’s time for an honest appraisal of what needs the most improvement, and how much of it. Perhaps you need to learn some simple tricks; or perhaps you need an attitude change; or perhaps a decision-making course would be best.

 

There are plenty of ways to develop your decision-making skills. Here are a few suggestions.

 

1. Specify the problem

 

First, identify the area that requires your decision-making to improve or resolve a situation. Be specific, make sure you understand the problem, and what is asked of you. Failure to prepare here ensures missing the mark completely.

 

2. Research

 

You need to understand the what, who, where, when and why. Dig through relevant information, speak and most importantly—listen to the right people, and think about what else could be useful in informing your decision. 

 

3. Brainstorm

 

Try to draw as many paths to success, whether you instinctively know they’ll work, or if it’s a wild idea. Write down and consider all options. Go away. Come back, and do it again.

 

4. Evaluate and reason

 

Now take all the possible solutions, and evaluate the pros and cons of each, write down how you instinctively feel about them, and your factual reasoning based on the data you have available. Go away. Come back, and do it again.

 

5. Consult (optional)

 

At this stage, it may be useful to consult your reasoning with someone. It could be a superior, a relevant colleague, or just someone you trust. You don’t have to throw out all your wild ideas—sometimes you just need to check your reasoning for picking one is sound and valid.

 

6. Pull the trigger

 

Here’s where your decision-making skills culminate. Pick the strongest solution (or combination of solutions). Do so confidently and ensure you can justify your decision too.

 

7. Bring the decision to life

 

Once the direction is set, it’s time to put the wheels in motion. Make your decision clear, transparent and justified to those who ought to be notified. Then take action to realise the thing you set out to achieve.

 

8. Reevaluate

 

After some time, look back on the outcome of your decision and evaluate it for yourself. Think about what you could have done differently, what pushed you towards the wrong or right choice, and what your biases were. This is a teachable moment.

 

What else to remember when including decision making skills on your CV?

 

With a course that will help you understand risk and the decision-making process better. 

 

This particular decision-making course at Coventry University is a module pulled directly from their MBA program—so you are learning the same skills as future leaders of business and the world at large.

 

Don’t forget to write a cover letter. That’s one of the best decisions you can make when applying for a job.

 

You don’t have to be a CV writing expert. In the LiveCareer CV builder you’ll find ready-made content for every industry and position, which you can then add with a single click.

 

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If you’re still struggling to define your decision-making skills, or you’re struggling with making a decision on how to include them in your CV, then let us know in the comments section. We’re here to help.

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LiveCareer Editorial Team

LiveCareer Editorial Team

About the author

Since 2005, the LiveCareer Team has been helping job seekers advance their careers. In our in-depth guides, we share insider tips and the most effective CV and cover letter writing techniques so that you can beat recruiters in the hiring game and land your next job fast. Also, make sure to check out our state-of-the-art CV and cover letter builder—professional, intuitive, and fully in line with modern HR standards. Trusted by 10 million users worldwide.

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