Decision-making in high-stake situations

Improve your effectiveness in uncertain or complex situations

Program flyer
Enroll now

Next available date: 26 June

When faced with uncertain, stressful or otherwise complex situations, analytical decision-making skills and critical thinking capabilities are key for any business executive. It is crucial to be more efficient and more bias-free in your analysis and subsequent decisions. Even more so in volatile times: the decisions you make or advise on can have great impact. The 2-day Decision-making in high-stake situations program focuses on improving these capabilities: participants will enhance their skills in making better, more rational decisions as well as in dealing with stressful, high-stake situations.

Participants will improve both their personal and organizational efficiency to reach better business results. Applications to financial decision-making will be discussed, including managing risk and uncertainty, investment decisions, budgeting, forecasting, quantitative calculating, sampling, etc.

The program is highly interactive and hands-on. It is based on role-plays and exercises, real-life business cases and examples, and empirical, behavioral research. To start off, the participants will engage in a group decision role-play, set in a high-stake situation, demonstrating how decisions can be made more efficiently. A number of decision biases will be discussed. Next, we will take a Big Picture view to improve the participants’ decision-making through enhancing their critical thinking and problem-solving skills in business. Finally, participants will engage in a self-reflection exercise, where they will be asked to analyze and discuss a business decision they made or observed in their own organization.

How you will benefit

The Decision-making in high-stake situations program will help you:

  • Improve your decision-making effectiveness
  • Deal with stressful, uncertain or complex situations more effectively
  • Better understand and deal with decision biases
  • Improve your critical thinking and problem-solving skills in business
  • Augment your personal and organizational effectiveness
  • Discuss applications to your own organization

Program length
2 days

Day 1 09:00 – 18:00
Day 2 09:00 – 18:00

Next step
We offer carefully crafted learning paths designed to help you dive deeper into various facets of finance. Take the next step in your professional learning path by choosing one or more of our specialized programs, for example:

An indicative outline is given below:

  • Decision-making under uncertainty: Speed Ventures (exercise and debriefing)
    • Efficient versus inefficient group processes
    • Confirmation bias
    • Improving decision-making processes
      • Discussing processes first
      • Decisions: reality versus models
      • Default option: opt in, opt out in policy programs. Example: pension schemes
      • Information search versus decision
  • Effective judgment and decision-making
    • Overcoming cognitive biases
      • Not getting the right data: Looking for the wrong data
      • Does this instance/event belong to a particular category?
      • How often does this happen?
      • What number should I attach to this?
      • Key strategies: Independence of judgments + Framing the problem + Organizational processes
      • Examples and applications to financial decision-making: investment decisions, budgeting, forecasting, quantitative calculating, sampling
    • Overcoming emotional & egocentric barriers
      • Managing your emotions. Example: investment decisions
      • Decision paralysis
      • Emotional reactions to risk. Example: assessing financial decisions
    • Overcoming learning obstacles
      • Looking at both successes and failures
      • Creating data
  • Big Picture: Improving critical thinking in business
    • Coping with uncertainty:
      • Real-life case: Investment decision (dealing with financial uncertainty)
    • Coping with complexity
    • Applying statistical reasoning to everyday judgment
  • Synthesis: NASA – Real-life case on decision-making in a high-stake, crisis situation
    • Decision-making under high stress
  • Self-reflection exercise & applications to your own organization
    • Self-reflection exercise about a past professional decision
    • Self-reflection exercise about improving organizational processes

Program preparation

There is some preparatory work required for this program. Pre-readings consist of case materials, chapters of a book and/or a few articles. These materials will be made available on a password protected webpage a few weeks prior to the program.

To ensure maximum benefit from the program for participant and fellow-participants, we strongly advise to prepare prior to attending.

Read more
> ‘Better decision makers make better managers.’ (Decision-making in high-stake situations)

The Decision-making in high-stake situations program is relevant to all executives and managers who want to improve and practice their decision-making effectiveness or their ability to deal with stressful, uncertain or complex situations.

The program is especially useful for:

  • Executives who make important decisions
  • Executives who analyze decisions
  • Investment bankers
  • Investment officers and analysts
  • Risk officers
  • Controllers
  • Consultants
  • Entrepreneurs
  • Project Leaders
  • Team Leaders
  • Line and Functional Managers
  • Business Unit and Department Directors

Please contact us should you feel the need to verify your level of knowledge, and/or the relevance of your work context.

Is this program not the right fit for you?
We offer other programs which you might find more interesting or useful, such as:


Professor Marwan Sinaceur, ESSEC Business School

Marwan Sinaceur

A French/Moroccan national, Marwan Sinaceur is Full Professor at ESSEC Business School in Paris. Before that, he was a Professor of Organizational Behavior at INSEAD for thirteen years. During this period Marwan received the Deans’ Commendation for Excellence in MBA Teaching twice and he also was co-director of the Behavioral Research Center. Marwan Sinaceur received…

Read more

  • 2 days
  • € 2950
  • Analytical Tools, Expertise, Strategy
  • English
  • NEW

Available dates

Need help?

Find your program here or contact us directly for personal advice:
Call us at +31 20 246 7140 or email us at [email protected].

Program flyer

For a more detailed program description and information regarding faculty please download the program document.


CFA/VBA – PL  credit hours
This program is eligible for 12 PL credit hours as granted by CFA Society VBA Netherlands

Enroll now

Satisfied clients