Running a business poses many challenges that require you to make many important decisions.

Making those decisions can be as simple as weighing a pros and cons list; however, sometimes they require a more thorough decision-making process, like a decision matrix.

Here are a few online matrix templates to get you started: Decision matrices can be used in a variety of situations, such as determining the best way to expand or to tackle a customer service issue.

Here we use a decision matrix to determine the best location for a new restaurant: In this example, a restaurant owner is considering four locations.

For example, if you are looking at pain points, be sure to word each issue so that it gets more points the worse it is, and vice versa when looking at benefits.

Multiply your original ratings by the weighted rankings to get a score, then add up all the factors under each option.Establish a rating scale to assess the value of each alternative/factor combination.It is important that the rankings are consistent throughout the matrix.This quantitative method can remove emotion as well as confusion to help you lead your business to success.Unlike a simple list of pros and cons, a decision matrix allows you to place importance on each factor and weigh them accordingly.She noted that it removes the layer of intuition that is sometimes an essential factor."The [matrix] does remove some of the gut feelings that are often indicative of strong intuitions and can sometimes point to something valuable," said Devero.Stuart Pugh, professor and head of design at the University of Strathclyde, first created the decision matrix method to help in selecting design alternatives.Since then, the tool has evolved to be a general decision-making aid, especially in business.Also known as the Pugh method, grid analysis or the multi-attribute utility theory, a decision matrix reduces subjectivity to help you make a sound conclusion.When you are faced with multiple choices and several variables, a decision matrix can clear up confusion and highlight considerations that may factor into the final outcome.

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