How to Create a Decision Tree in Word

Image Credit: gpointstudio/iStock/GettyImages

Decision trees have become an integral element of modern business strategy today. Using a decision tree, business leaders can explore a wide range of scenarios, decisions and choices which affect their success on a daily basis. More than anything, a decision tree provides macro-level awareness of any given scenario and highlights both the risk and reward of many different challenges and opportunities alike.

Given the visual nature of a decision tree, many individuals rely on standard productivity software to create them. In fact, you can begin creating a decision tree in Microsoft Word without any specialized training or knowledge. With a basic knowledge of this program, you can begin creating your first decision tree in a matter of seconds.

Your Decision Tree Maker Options

To create a decision tree in Word, you will take advantage of the various shape tools available to you. Generally speaking, a decision tree relies on lines, squares, circles and triangles. Whereas squares represent concrete decisions, circles represent uncertain outcomes and triangles represents final results as a product of the outcomes and decisions made earlier. Lines will be used to connect various elements of the decision tree together. Once the layout is created, the text tools can be used to complete the decision tree.

Constructing the Decision Tree

By selecting these items within the "Drawing" menu, you can quickly begin implementing them into the context of the document. You can experiment with layout and spacing in order to find the best way to arrange these shapes so as to maximize clarity and organization. Always remember that your decision tree should encourage rapid overview and assessment. Make sure your content is easy to read and well organized so that readers can quickly begin seeing the relationship between decisions and results. A well-designed decision tree made in Microsoft Word can act as a powerful complement to any presentation or supplementary documentation delivered to employees or clients.

Exploring Decision Tree Templates

Perhaps the easiest method for creating a decision tree in Microsoft Word is to use a pre-designed template. A number of companies across the internet provide decision tree template choices either for little cost or entirely free. These templates are designed to allow users to quickly input text within the larger pre-established decision tree hierarchy. Although specific design details of the decision tree may be off limits to users due to the fixed nature of the template, the content of the tree will be 100% customizable. For those who have no real need to create their own decision tree and simply wish to leverage its functionality, this is definitely the right choice.

references