Even in your indecision, a choice is made. You’re choosing to refrain from making a decision. This choice costs you one of your most valuable resources: time. You may think waiting until you are absolutely positive of your decision is the best route. However, in the lost time, you may be giving the leg up to your competition. Or, losing the confidence of your employees. Decisive action is one of the top three traits that build credibility. As a decision-maker, it is imperative that you develop the necessary skills to make quick, effective decisions. When in doubt, remember these four steps:
1. Identify the problem
2. Gather information
3. Filter and organize the information
4. Arrive at a conclusion
Becoming more decisive may be difficult at first. The more you practice being decisive, the more natural it will feel. As you become more experienced, you will receive enough feedback to get a sense about the outcome of your decisions. The ones that didn’t go well, you can learn from. The process of incorporating feedback from previous decisions will further develop your ability to become more decisive.
It isn’t necessary (or possible) to make the perfect choice every time. But it is necessary to develop your decision-making skills by assessing the situation confidently, acquiring reliable intelligence, and taking swift action based on sound reasoning. Repeatedly. Analysis paralysis is not an option for a successful business owner. If you find yourself consistently having difficulty with one or more of the four steps, take a closer look. Are you asking the right questions when gathering information? Do you have the necessary expertise to filter the wheat from the chaff? Once you decide to become more decisive, you’ve already begun.