Cynefin, a decision-making framework, helps leaders categorise problems into five domains: simple, complicated, complex, chaotic, and disorder. Simple problems have known solutions and can be solved through best practices. Complicated problems require expertise to solve, but the solutions are still knowable. Complex problems have no known solutions, and their solutions can only be determined through probing and sensing. Chaotic problems require immediate action, and the solutions can only be determined in retrospect. Disorder is the state of not knowing which domain a problem belongs to.

Different decision-making models are needed for each domain. The Vroom-Yetton-Jago model is suitable for simple and complicated problems, as it focuses on the level of participation in decision-making. The OODA (Observe, Orient, Decide, Act) model is suitable for complex problems, as it emphasises rapid decision-making in uncertain situations. The Cynefin model itself is suitable for chaotic problems, as it focuses on taking action to stabilise the situation.

Understanding these models and the Cynefin framework can help leaders make better decisions by appropriately categorising problems and choosing the right decision-making model for each situation.

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