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Why Decision Making is Key to Being an Effective Leader

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Importance of Decision Making
As leaders, we spend a considerable amount of time thinking about how to lead, becoming more assertive and inspire our team to work to the best of their abilities.

Decision making, on the other hand, is often overlooked as another important skill good leaders must possess. Having the ability to make decisive decisions, especially during uncertain times, is an incredibly important skill.

Research shows that businesses that make effective and fast decisions will always outpace their competitors.

A Bain & Company survey of roughly 800 international businesses supports the theory that effective decision making and strong performance go hand in hand.

The findings show a 95 percent link between companies that excel at making resolute decisions and those with exceptional financial performance. Besides the economic impact, your decisions affect people. They demonstrate your values and set an example for those who follow you.

By improving the elements of decision making, whether it be the quality, speed or implementation, company performance is improved considerably.

The Key to Decisive Decision Making
“More is lost by indecision than wrong decision. Indecision is the thief of opportunity. It will steal you blind.” – Cicero, Grecian Philosopher

I think we can all agree we’ve been in that situation. It’s easier to procrastinate about making the right decision rather than just doing it.

While we’re contemplating the perfect resolution, the opportunity passes by and we’re left with a missed chance. Ultimately, if you want to become a successful leader, you need to be able to make key business decisions quickly and effectively.

Instead of becoming paralysed by uncertainty, we need to accept it rather than resolve it. Your limited time, energy and money need to go towards making the best decision possible in the face of an ambiguous outcome.

Things to Consider when Making a Decision
– The most important factor is urgency. Do you have enough time to continue researching and collaborating, or is this decision needed as soon as possible?
– How will your choice affect those involved? Plan for the best possible outcome and the worst.
– Be aware of the emotions that come with making a decision. Accept and allow them to guide you without controlling you.
– Recognise the element of uncertainty and understand you may not be able to resolve it. Few outcomes are an absolute certainty, and even though it might be uncomfortable, it’s necessary to accept this and move forward.
– Listen to your intuition. Going with your gut can prevent you from overthinking decisions and steering yourself towards something that goes against your instincts and experience.

Overcome Uncertainty
Research: Become an expert in your field. Expand your expertise and find the information you need to help you make an informed decision. Collate data, revisit tried and tested strategies and analyse customer feedback. The more knowledgeable you are, the more likely you’ll make an educated decision.

Go with your gut: Trusting your intuition goes deeper than your conscious mind and, more often than not, that feeling is right. Trusting yourself and your abilities can free you from the endless cycle of over-thinking.

Collaborate: Two minds are better than one, especially when that mind belongs to a more knowledgeable colleague. Involving the relevant people will not only enhance decisions but improve your leadership capability.

The Entourage BSB51915 Diploma of Leadership and Management is a course designed to give you the best practice frameworks and guidance needed to grow into a leader that is able to construct a clear path for success, inspire teams to action and enable greatness within others. Learn more here! 

About Ben Salkeld

With over 15 years of business experience, entrepreneur Benjamin Salkeld has dedicated his career to leadership, business and coaching. Previously, he served as Founder & Director of BEASTBOX Pty Ltd, a nutrition sampling concept created to help sport enthusiasts find the right supplements to suit their needs. He is now a Business Advisor at The Entourage.

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