A business leader has to make the calls, so it’s crucial to know which way to go
Running a business can be mentally and emotionally challenging. As the leader, you are responsible for making tough decisions that will affect the future of your business, while also motivating your team to work towards achieving your goals.
At some point, you will inevitably face difficult decisions that require you to take risks or even terminate a close employee. These decisions can be overwhelming, but it is important to develop strategies to make them easier. One such strategy is formulating superior options, and learning how to cope with the stress and burden that comes with making tough decisions. In this article, we will discuss some effective strategies to help you make better decisions, and how to cope with the pressures of decision-making.
Minimising decision-making stress
Making important decisions as a business leader can be overwhelming and stressful. The constant need to weigh options and consider potential outcomes can lead to decision fatigue, where even small decisions become mentally taxing. To reduce the stress of decision-making, it’s important to be mindful of how you spend your mental energy. Prioritise tasks that are urgent and critical to your business, and delegate less important decisions to trusted members of your team. This will not only help you conserve your energy for the most important decisions but also help your team members grow in their decision-making skills. By minimising decision-making stress, you can improve your ability to make sound, rational decisions that drive your business forward.
Detach yourself from the problem to make better decisions
To make better decisions, it’s important to detach yourself from the problem. Imagine that the issue isn’t happening to your company so that you can look at it from the perspective of an outsider. Identify the core issue and describe the situation in your mind. If a friend or colleague approached you for advice, what would you say to them? Usually, it’s easier to find a solution when we’re not emotionally invested in the situation, as the stakes feel lower and we can approach it with more clarity.
Set a fixed deadline
As a Business Coach working with many entrepreneurs, I have noticed that one of the most significant challenges in decision-making is being decisive in a timely manner. Business leaders tend to procrastinate. Have you ever heard of Parkinson’s Law? It states that work expands to fill the time available for its completion. In other words, the amount of time it takes to complete a task swells to fill the amount of time allotted for it.
So, if you give yourself a week to make a decision, you’re going to take a week. If you give yourself a day, you’re going to take a day. While it’s not wise to rush decisions with significant consequences, you’ll also want to set a strict deadline so you don’t end up procrastinating for too long. Your time and resources are too valuable to waste.
Using data to inform your decisions
Making decisions becomes much easier when you have quantitative data to inform them. Numbers don’t lie, so when you play the numbers game, you’ll always see things objectively, and this can help you make stress-free decisions. Even things that are not inherently quantifiable can often be assigned values to allow for a quantitative comparison.
Data can be especially helpful when making decisions based on historical trends or other metrics. Many business owners underestimate the value of looking at charts and other statistical information that can provide a broader perspective on growth and changes. Making important decisions without any form of statistical analysis increases the risk of making the wrong move. So, always let the numbers guide you, and use data-driven insights to inform your decision-making process.
Consider the long-term effects of your decisions
It’s easy to get caught up in the urgency of a current problem and make a decision that only provides a short-term solution. However, it’s important to think about the long-term impact of your decisions on your business. Band-aid solutions may provide temporary relief, but they can cause more significant issues in the future.
When making decisions, consider the ripple effects and potential consequences that may arise in the months or years to come. Even seemingly minor decisions can have a significant impact on your business’s macro-level objectives. Don’t neglect to consider the long-term effects, and avoid making hasty decisions that could cause long-term damage to your business.
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