Nail Biting, Be Gone: 3 Ways to Avoid a Big Mistake When Making a Big Decision

Business.com / Starting a Business / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

For a lot of leaders, making a confident decision is a complicated process. These 3 tips can help you avoid making a big mistake.

It’s not always easy to make a big decision that could impact your company. In fact, it can be downright scary. 

The thought of making a mistake may be enough to keep you up at night.

Of course, this doesn’t change the fact that you have to make up your mind at some point.

The person at the top, the one who pulls the trigger on the tough decisions, is often the difference between a successful company and one that flounders. For a lot of leaders, making a confident decision is a complicated and somewhat challenging process.

Related Article: Emotions vs. Information in Business Decision Making

There are steps you can take to avoid a big mistake when making a significant decision. Here is what you need to consider the next time you are faced with a decision that has you on the edge of your seat.

1. Admit that You Don’t Know Everything

You may know a lot about your company and industry. You may also be the person best equipped to make the decision. But remember this: you are not perfect (and you never will be) and there is no way of knowing everything.

Not only should you own up to this, but you should also make it known to others in your company. This will give them the confidence they need to weigh in on important decisions (more on this below). This improves your chance of success, while also showing others that you appreciate and value their opinion. Talk about a true win-win.

2. It’s Not Always About the Money

Does money drive every decision you make? Are you the type who considers the dollars and cents before you do anything else? This is a sound approach, but it is also one that can lead you down the wrong path.

There are times when you need to make a strategic business decision, regardless of what this means to your company’s bottom line. For example, a business development deal may not look good when you break down the numbers, but it could help you forge a relationship that allows you to close a bigger deal down the road.

Here is an example: a service based business is faced with the decision of whether to partner with a company that is not willing to pay their standard rate. Typically, you would turn this client down and move on. However, if you feel that the partnership can bring bigger profits in the future, it may be a good time to bite the bullet. Remember, it’s not always about the money. You need to look into your crystal ball and consider how this could benefit your company over the long run. This is what good leaders do.

3. Seek Advice from Others

Even if you want to receive advice from others on a big decision, some people will only chime in if they are asked. They don’t want to speak out of turn, so they remain quiet until you come to them. And that is exactly what you should do. Pride should not come into the equation. Just because you ask for help does not mean you are any less equipped to lead the company to greatness. It actually shows that you are willing to do whatever it takes to succeed.

If you receive and implement advice from another party, it’s always good practice to thank the person once the decision has been made. This shows that you care about their input. It will also make it easier for the person to speak up in the future, which is exactly what you want.

Related Article: The Psychology of Choice: How Your Business Can Leverage Customer Decision Making

Final Thought

The next time you are facing a big business decision, think about what you can do to improve your chance of making all the right moves. You may be surprised to find that a change to your approach will push you towards greener pastures.

Here it is again: realize that you don’t know everything. Forget dollars and cents (but not completely). And of course, reach out to others for another point of view.

You may be surprised at where you end up!

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