EntreLeadership – Decision Making for Leaders

26594572_sDave Ramsey wrote the book EntreLeadership: 20 Years of Practical Business Wisdom from the Trenches. In one of his chapters, he talks about the steps a leader should take when making decisions. “Leadership is not for the weak and timid; it requires tremendous backbone…EntreLeadership is simply not for wimps.”

For me, this chapter was a list of do’s and dont’s for making good decisions both personally and in business. We all have made terrible decisions. We all have made decisions by our lack of action. In order for me to digest what Dave wrote about, I made a list so I can see the steps. I thought I would share them with you – Enjoy!

Fear – Fear is one thing that causes us not to make the obvious decisions. We are afraid of losing a customer, a lawsuit, of losing money. Don’t allow fear to drive you. We will all have fear, but make sure the strength of your courage is larger than your fear.

Set a deadline – Procrastination will drive a business to close its doors. Yet, a good leader will self-impose a deadline on decisions to force themselves to take action. President John F Kennedy said, “There are costs and risks to a program of action, but they are far less than the long-range risks and costs of comfortable inaction.”

Elements of Good Decisions – Never make a decision when you are angry. Take a step back and get more information in order to make a less emotional decision.

Take Time – Big decisions take more time than little decisions. When you are looking for a pack of gum to buy, don’t hold up the line! When you are deciding on the health and future of an organization, you need to take the time. Hasty decisions will cause your business to crash!

Lots of Options – The power of a good decision is to make sure you have lots of options. The more options, the better the quality of the decision you will make. Take time to research all the options.

Worst Case Scenario – Worst case can be the loss of money, embarrassment, or the loss of your largest client. Emotionally digest and accept the worse case scenario. Many times the worse case can cause changes in your business to produce some of the best results.

Information is King/Queen – The art of a good decision is obvious; the more information you have, the more likely you will make the correct decision.

Teach Your Team – Teach your team to make the call in the business. If the owner is making all the decisions, it can cause work-flow bottlenecks. There should never be a line at the boss’ office door to ask for permission on every detail. This will create a zoo. Teach your team to solve problems and find solutions.

Use Guiding Values – Ethics can make decisions easier and quicker. It’s the Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” Our values should drive our decisions. Don’t lie or hide the truth. Ask yourself, if the tables were turned and you were walking in the other person’s shoes, how would you want to be treated?

Small Bites – Sometimes decisions are large. Don’t be overwhelmed. Keep it simple by making a series of smaller decisions. When you make smaller decisions, it leads you in the right direction.

Financial Questions – When a leader makes decisions, they must understand the financial impact of the decision if it turns out to be completely wrong. Never go “all-in” on a product or idea.

Ask Experts – The Bible says, “In the multitude of counsel there is safety.” As you gather information, look at the options, and always seek the advice of experts. Talk with an attorney, an accountant, etc. When their advice is in agreement and the leader understands, you will have peace of mind with your decision.

Ask Your Spouse –Dave talks about himself running the business, not his wife. Yet, his wife provides insight that has proven to be valuable. He says every time he goes against his wife’s “feeeelings”, it costs him $10,000. If you are not married, find an accountability partner. Even the Lone Ranger had Ton!

Write a Report 
– Have you ever spoken to a friend to discuss a problem only to know the answer by the time you finished talking about it? Force your thoughts through a process to reach a higher level of understanding. Write yourself a report outlining the decision. This engages a different part of the brain.

Be Set Free 
– Decisions are liberating. There is tremendous energy and peace that a decision can bring. Use the list above to create a process in which every leader can make a good decision.
About Renee Daggett

Renee Daggett is the founder and President of Admin Books, Inc, a bookkeeping and tax firm. She is also the author of “Your Financial Flight Plan: Pilot Your Business To Profitability”. Renee lives her life with purpose and helps her clients find peace of mind as they achieve success in their businesses.

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