Be Decisive

January 11, 2018

By Mark David

Leaders act decisively in the absence of certainty. – Bertrand Russell

Should you or shouldn’t you? Yes or no? Now or later? Bureaucrats somehow find a way to avoid making decisions so they can escape all responsibility. But good leaders and coaches know that making decisions is essential to leadership. After all, your company or team can’t make progress unless you’re willing to make decisions. In a perfect world, you would have all the time you need to make a decision. In reality, many decisions must be made quickly, based only on the best information currently available. “The fact is, you’ll never have all the information you want or need to make a perfectly safe decision,” writes David Mahoney. “If you did, it wouldn’t be a leadership decision, it would be a foregone conclusion.” When it’s up to you to make fast decisions, three things help:
  1. Turn to your values. If your decision is consistent with your values, you will usually be right.
  2. Listen to your gut. Instinct and intuition are valuable guides.
  3. Be fearless, knowing that you can usually circle back and make adjustments if your initial decision turns out wrong.
Help your teammates learn to be decisive, too. When you are faced with a decision, consider delegating it to someone on your team. This enables the team to make decisions that are in alignment with yours.

Excerpt from The New Coaching Illustrated

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