SUMMARY I was faced with making a decision whether to allow a coworker to present the findings of an internal audit he had performed. The results were not good, and he had not discussed them with the responsible manager. I advised him not to present the results until he had reviewed them with the manager. After discussing the results with him, my coworker said he was glad he had not shared them with the committee. Some of his information was incorrect, and he would have embarrassed the manager with the low scores.

CONTEXT Context of the intuitive experience
Where physically: I was in my office sitting at my desk. The room was bright and sunny, and I felt very comfortable.
Where mentally: I was thinking about all of the work I had to do that week. I felt uneasy with the fact that my boss was on leave. I don't often have the opportunity to call and ask her questions. I have been making decisions that she would normally handle.

EXPERIENCE The intuitive experience
Just before: Monday mornings I prepare handouts for a weekly meeting I facilitate. I was thinking of issues to discuss and getting ideas from my coworkers. A regular meeting component is presentation of internal audit findings. I discussed an audit that Marvin had completed for the Customer Services department. The results were not good, and he wanted to present the findings. I asked if he had discussed them with the department manager. He replied that he had not.
At the moment: Marvin really wanted to share the results of the audit at the meeting. Even though I am not exactly his "boss," I have been charged with training and showing him the ropes. I felt that I needed to make a decision and told him, "I do not think it would be a good idea to present the findings of this audit. You should postpone this until you have a chance to discuss the results with the manager."
Just after: After strongly emphasizing my opinion and convincing him not to present the findings, I felt relieved. I sensed some disaster had been avoided. I didn't want to debate this with him. I knew I was right, but I had no past experience or proof to support my point, so I was glad that he eventually took my advice.

OBSTACLES Obstacles to the intuitive experience
Physical tension: I felt uneasy, not about my decision, but about having to "shoot down" my coworker's idea to present the audit findings. I don't know how he feels about having to run everything he does by me, but I think he resents the situation.
Fears felt: I was afraid Marvin was going to challenge my authority. I have been in the department the longest with the exception of my boss so she expects me to keep things running smoothly. I also had a deeper fear about an embarrassing incident that might discredit the importance of the weekly meeting. It is crucial the meeting run well and justify the manager's participation.
Desires felt: I wanted to prove I can manage the department while my boss is on leave. I am making decisions I don't always get to make, and I want the committee to know I can handle the department without my boss around. Another side of me wanted Marvin to share the findings. I was disconcerted about the results, and a part of me wanted to bring these issues up to generate motivation for fixing the problems.
Mental clutter: I was focused on the meeting that would take place the next morning. I was also thinking about how my business philosophy is different from that of my boss. If she had been in the office, she might have told Marvin to go ahead and present the results. Who cares what the manager thinks?

SOURCE Source of the intuitive message
Conscious to
Subconscious: 6
I drew some on past experience since I have performed internal audits for several months. However I have had little interaction with the manager and didn't know if she would accept the findings as constructive criticism, or if she would dispute them in front of the entire committee.
Internal to
External: 2
Facing a potential conflict, I had to make a decision based on past experience. I tried to clear my mind and let a decision come to me.
Rational to
Intuitive: 3
This experience was more on the rational end of the spectrum. Certain rational factors came into play, but I tried to draw on intuitive sources as well to arrive at a correct decision.

MESSAGE Classification of the intuitive message
Type: 2 This experience involved a situation in which I had to make a decision with little historical information to go on.
Form: 3 When I made the decision I thought would be correct, I felt a sense of relief. I had drawn upon whatever resources I had to arrive at a decision that would benefit myself and the department.
Kind: 1 The alternatives were clear. Marvin could present the findings, that may or may not have been correctly interpreted, and have the committee members question the audit, or hold the findings for one week and review the audit with the manger. Another choice would have been letting Marvin report the findings to "embarrass" the manager into corrective action.

INFORMATION Information in the intuitive message
Strength: 4 I had several alternatives in my head that I was considering. I had a feeling I knew what the correct decision should be.
Clarity: 6 I felt a sense of relief after I made the decision and shared it with Marvin. I was sure I was correct, and I tried to convince him that he should not present audit findings before sharing them with the department's manager.
Surprise: 3 I was trying to evoke my intuition to make a decision. A mildly surprising feeling came with the satisfaction that I had made a correct decision.
Accuracy: 6 Some of the results of the audit were not correct. Marvin discovered this when he met with the manager. That would have been embarrassing and damaging to the credibility of the compliance department. It is extremely important that the other managers respect our auditing skills as well as our ability to make useful recommendations.

EVALUATION Evaluation of the intuitive experience
How intentional: I tried to clear my head, relax and reflect on the situation presented to me. I didn't try to systematically go through all of the pros and cons of each alternative as I customarily do. I tried to let an answer come to me.
Information use: Telling my coworker not to present his findings at the meeting proved to be very good information. I had an idea that an adversariarial situation would arise.
Benefits derived: Advising Marvin not to present the audit findings, I may have "saved face" for our department. I helped our new employee realize that he should not act like the IRS and get middle management in trouble with upper management. His role is to help each department find areas of non compliance and assist them in developing a corrective action plan.
Personal learning: I am learning to trust my intuition to make decisions. I am also learning that it is sometimes difficult to convince people of my intuitive decisions when I don't have data to back them up.

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