Use Your BRAA To Get Support and Approval

Recent research has shown that we suffer increasingly from decision fatigue. For example, each email that we receive is another set of decisions that we used to not have to make:

Do we read it?
Do we action it?
Do we forward it?
Do we defer it?
Do we delete it? Or
Do we file it?

For an average 30-40 emails a day this is an energy drain.
Research shows the most decisions we make the more tired we get. The more tired we get, the more likely it is that we will say NO to the next decision that we are required to make. As we get decision fatigued, it is easier to opt for the path of least resistance to each new request that is made to us which is usually to say NO.

This is critically important information to know, from a leadership perspective and from a business context.
Later in the working day we are more likely to get a NO to our requests than earlier in the day.

So when one of my clients presented me with his methodology for making an approval choice (i.e. getting a YES) a no brainer, I snapped it up. Women have known for years that there are times when a little extra support does wonders.

In every event where he wants to get executive support my client uses his BRAA. Now I am suggesting to you, that when you want to get a result make sure you too use your BRAA.

B – Background

He begins his approval request with 3-4 paragraphs summarising the context, the problem or issue, and any useful background data With costs, man power, potential upsides, potential downsides, and options his already explored. It takes a degree of practice to get such a concise description of the background but the payoff is worth the effort.

R – Recommendation

 He then writes 1-2 paragraphs explaining at a reasonably high level what direction he wants to follow and what outcomes he wants to create.

A – Actions

Then he lists succinct bullet points on Actions that he is already taking, needs someone else to take, or is looking for approval on. He uses the sub headings:

• Personnel,
• Processes,
• Software,
• Hardware,
• Capital Investment, and
• Other.

A – Approval

With all the ground work laid and a clear business case set out, he itemises each approval request with a clear call to action from his manager or executive. Usually he gets a YES, because he has made decision making easier and by passed decision fatigue.

 The secrets to his success are the succinctness of his message, (the maximum length of any document he creates using his BRAA is 2 pages), and the clear call to action in the approval section.

Now you too know what to do when you want to bypass executive decision fatigue to get to a YES!

1. Make your request earlier in the day, or shortly after lunch when your Manager is fresh.     And,
2. Use your BRAA to get extra support and approval.

Good luck!.

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