Effective Leaders Are Decisive

Effective Leaders Are Decisive

According to author and executive coach, Steve Siebold, effective leaders are decisive. They make decisions and take immediate action toward achieving their desired outcomes, using both momentum and speed to their advantage. Effective leaders also reserve the right to make necessary changes when needed.

Not making a decision is often worse than making a bad or wrong decision. Not making a decision is actually making a decision because you give control of the outcome to the circumstances or other people. When leaders are not certain or confident, they procrastinate. When key decisions are finally made, opportunity is often lost.

Decisions do not have equal consequences. Type one decisions cannot be reversed and require thoughtfulness and thoroughness when making them. Type two decisions can be easily reversed. An issue arises when leaders treat all decisions as type one, creating risk aversion and speed of implementation within their organization.

Colin Powell, former Secretary of State, uses the 40-70 Rule for making decisions. When making tough (type two) decisions, you should have no less than 40% of the information and no more than 70% of it. If you have less than 40%, you are shooting from the hip. If you wait for more than 70%, opportunities will pass you by.

Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, advocates making type two decisions when you have 70% of the information. He also says, if you wait for 90% of the information, you are moving too slow. According to Bezos, “If you are good at course correcting, being wrong may be less costly than you think; whereas being slow is going to be expensive.”

If you are excited about something, but not taking immediate action toward it, you are searching for reasons not to do it. The longer you wait, the less likely you will be to pull the trigger. It is better to take imperfect action than wait to make the perfect decision before acting. If you are right, stay the course. If you are wrong, course correct.

All contents copyright 2018, Josh Lowry. All rights reserved.


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