Entrepreneurial tips #11
Making decisions is the blocking and tackling of being an entrepreneur.
If you want to start a business, plan on making a lot of decisions, making them quickly and making them on all kinds of topics.
In addition to running a digital communications firm, I am part owner of a craft brewery and a gourmet pizza restaurant. So, in the same hour sometimes, I might be making decisions about email strategy, growlers and pepperoni.
We are also building out our space to bring all three companies together—so now there are also many, many decisions to be made about permits, subcontractors, flooring…the list goes on.
To me, effective decision making requires two things: courage and intuition.
I want information but not mountains of it. I think people who are reluctant to make decisions keep asking for more data and more reports to put off making one. Not me,
Make a decision, and move on. You really have to trust your gut (it got you this far, didn’t it?)
Here are a few other suggestions:
Do what’s right—Always good advice, true? With decisions, I mean this: what is right for our clients? What is right for our company? What works best for our employees? (And, finally) What is best for me? It aligns and makes the decision clear most of the time.
Get advice—You make the decision, not the committee or someone else. But if you’re lucky enough (as I am) to be surrounded by smart, trustworthy people, ask for their perspective. You will likely get a good range from “worst-case scenario” to ”rose-colored glasses”—including things you hadn’t considered.
Analyze—You’ll be able to gauge the results of your decisions pretty easily. But it’s worth the time and effort to do some analysis. Not to beat yourself up or to take a victory lap—just to help you in the future. What went right? What went wrong? What could I do differently?
Don’t wait—In an ideal world, you’d have plenty of time, all the pertinent information and a comfortable seat outside on a breezy day while you decide. In the actual world, you have to make decisions while being distracted by a million other things, maybe with the clock running down, and when you aren’t feeling well. You can’t wait for the perfect time. Decide.