Is your decision-making impulsive, emotional or pragmatic?
Proper decision-making is fundamental to your role as a business manager. You will have to make lots of them and in many cases without the benefit of all the facts. What you can do is minimise your careless decision-making. It is poor decision-making and procrastination, which puts the breaks on capacity building and better outcomes.
Many things can cause you to become careless or sloppy. These can include no, or poor direction or objectives, laziness, fear of making a mistake, complacency or merely taking the easy way out.
It could be beneficial to make a list of recent good and bad decisions and analyse what you did in each case and why you did it. Without proper decision-making, you will be in gradual decline.
Remember the right decisions come from experience and experience comes from bad decisions. Nothing happens until you decide to act. However, it would help if you were informed first. Right decision-making should also be based on the critical numbers in our business first.
- What are the numbers to keep the cash flow, right?
- What is your personal “batting average.”
- What are the “batting averages” of your team members?
- Do you understand the “law of averages”?
- Know key financial ratios, profit, cash, inventory, debtors.
- Performance statistics help to make better decisions.
- What are the handicaps and barriers?
- What are the numbers required to achieve the result you want?
If the going gets tough, do not slow the numbers down or speed them up, make more calls, do more presentations, in other words, increase the pulse rate of the business.
Right decisions come about by having useful information.
- What information do you need to make a decision?
- Where do you get useful information?
- What databases of information can you access?
- Is your business left to chance?
- What are the trends impacting on the business?
- Is your business based on past mistakes or old information?
- Do you have a “bunker mentality”, you only take in the information as it comes to you?
Perhaps the biggest issue facing us in decision-making is when we have to make a decision, “knowing what we do not know”, to make the right decision. Of course, if you do not know what we are talking about or what is happening, anything is possible.
What are the decisions that will propel your business successfully into the future? How fast and decisively will the decisions be made? Start by making a list of the things which are holding you back and then make the decision that will remove the roadblocks and create breakthroughs. Get others to help you think a decision through; it can be too hard doing it by yourself.
Always take into account lifestyle decision-making.
All too often, people are carried away with an idea without any consideration of their lifestyle, or the people involved, only to regret their decision down the track.
Sure, it’s essential to have a good idea or opportunity on which to base your decision. However, all the fundamentals should be in the mix.
Life is made up of an infinite number of choices. Most decisions, such as what you’ll eat for lunch today, are small and only slightly impactful. However, it’s the big decisions, the ones that can change your life forever, which are the tough ones.
“It doesn’t matter which side of the fence you get off on. What matters most is getting off. You cannot make progress without making decisions”. Jim Rohn
“Occasionally, it’s the small incremental decisions which will change your life forever”. Peter Sergeant