We all know them, the people who cannot make a decision. They cannot decide to do anything. Maybe you have been one of these people. You agonized over a decision until it was too late to make it; you put off deciding anything until the decision made itself for you. How did that work out? Not as well as if you made a decision, tried something, and then decided whether the decision was the right one. You probably lost out on an opportunity.
Maybe you were just too afraid to decide what to do; maybe you wanted to have someone else make the decision for you. Does this make you a coward; does it make you less of a leader? This depends on how you look at the situation; it depends on how you evaluate yourself, but that might involve making another decision. A business owner or manager must be able to make decisions, react to the results of those decisions, and adjust if needed.
Years ago, I worked in systems development and user interface. I heard all the usual statements: “We have never tried that; we have always done it this way; we have our way of doing that; that won’t work here”. You need to think outside of the box, be creative, and take a chance. You may need to step outside your comfort zone and try something that you have never tried before. Who knows, you might like it, and it might work better than you think.
Fact gathering is the correct step to take before making any decision. However, you can carry it too far, so far as to be ridiculous. Gather your facts, look at all sides of a question, and then make the decision. Put your money down and take a shot. A well informed decision can make your company so much better, but a decision that makes itself makes you a poor and ineffective leader. Your staff and your clients will evaluate your actions.
What if you make the wrong decision? Great, you just eliminated one possibility. How many failures, or wrong decisions, did inventors such as Thomas Edison experience before success was found? If something that you try doesn’t work, maybe the best decision is to shut that process down and try something else. Maybe the best decision is to go back to what you were doing before. Maybe the best decision is to keep on with a new process, but with some adjustments. Make a decision and move forward.
What if you cannot bring yourself to make decisions and that’s that? You cannot bring yourself to pull the trigger. Take a long look in the mirror and ask yourself what your employees and what your clients see. Do they see a person with whom they want to work or do business? Do they see someone whom they believe will not be there for them if times are difficult? What do your networking partners think about you? Do others trust you and believe in your ability as a business person? Maybe you should ask them, and ask for their help.
What can you do about this problem? First, make a decision to be more decisive and become a leader. Change your mode of operation and take a stand when needed. Continue your fact gathering and know when all the facts necessary are gathered. You can always continue to discuss the pros and cons of every decision, but a leader will grasp an opportunity and take a stand. Then continue to look at the facts after the decision is made and adjust if necessary. Your networking partners can assist you with this.
Once again, do you agree or disagree with these thoughts? What are your tricks to keep yourself from falling victim to indecisiveness? Leave me your comments, or email me at Jim@SOC4Now.com, or call me at 360-314-8691. Just make a decision to do so.