Business isn’t just about making decisions; it’s about making effective and often challenging decisions for the betterment of the business, either short-term or long-term. Good decision making is a trait some individuals don’t naturally have – you can be a successful business owner but still face difficulty when challenging decisions arise.
Often, the pressures of making the right choices when it comes to business, is a source of anxiety for many people – especially if you’re an entrepreneur just starting out in their field and are feeling cautious about taking big steps.
However, failing to make a decision is often just as bad as making the wrong decision. In order to get ahead, you need to be comfortable in making decisions when it counts.
Below is a list of suggestions which can help you master the art of effective decision making within business.
Gain Extra Experience and Qualifications That Will Help
Extra qualifications are only going to be a boon in business. Being able to streamline important business decisions is a skillset which you can learn through hard work and research. Qualifications like a Master of Supply Chain and Logistics Management can teach you valuable skills in regards to assisting and leading businesses effectively, and knowing how to analyze data and certain situations to produce the best results.
With the way businesses are run these days due to changing technology and consumer demand, brushing up on the latest qualifications and experience available to you will ensure that you’re never out of the loop and can therefore apply the best knowledge to your business.
Always Ensure That You’re Knowledgeable About the Goings on of Your Business
This can be challenging if you have a large business, and don’t have a hand in every department. However, you still need to make the effort to be updated on a regular basis. Only then can you make sure that you always have sufficient background information to make informed decisions. You can’t be expected to make effective business decisions if you don’t have any context or aren’t fully aware about what’s going on in your business.
Suggestions on how to best stay in the loop, for both large and small businesses, include:
- Regular team meetings to discuss the latest information
- Ask for regular reports to be written up or emailed to you if you have many staff members and other individuals running each department (if applicable)
- Have a workable online system which gives you access to all data regarding all manner of the business, whenever you need it. This will enable you to fact-check and stay updated
- Make the effort yourself to stay on top of everything, and set time aside to catch up if needed
- Ask questions and learn more whenever you can
Consult with Others Within the Business (or Outside of It)
If You Run a Large Business
If you’re a business owner, it doesn’t mean that decisions – difficult or otherwise – should be your burden alone. Ultimately, you will have the final say in anything, but seeking advice from those you trust is encouraged especially if your business runs many departments. Put your trust in managers or team leaders who are more knowledgeable in a certain area than you are. Asking your trusted employees for advice only means you’re more informed about making a decision, and provides an objective viewpoint.
An effective business also runs on happy and motivated staff members. If a decision you need to make will impact your employees, or directly relates to them, discussing matters with them may help to bring you to a positive outcome and decision. They will also appreciate being communicated with, for the betterment of the business.
If You Run a Startup Company Alone
If you are an entrepreneur running a very small company, or perhaps a startup company which only has you working for it, then decisions naturally fall to you alone. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean you can’t seek advice externally. Conduct research within the business field, network with other business professionals who have been in the same position you have and seek sound advice, or even ask advice from those closest to you like family and friends.
This may not seem ideal, but any external and additional viewpoint may help to clarify your own decision making process, which is valuable if you are an entrepreneur working independently.
Think Ahead to the Desired Results
Decisions shouldn’t be made on a whim or impulsively, and neither should they be made without considering long-term effects. Some decisions may seem negative in the short-term, but if they will eventually lead to the right goals for the business, then the difficult decision may need to be made in order to be more beneficial for the end goal.
This can only be achieved if you actually understand what your business’ end goals are. Once you know what you’re trying to achieve with each decision you make, you can then analyze whether a certain decision will bring you a step closer, or a step further away from the desired goal.
If the latter, then the decision may not be the best one for your business.
Take a Time Out
Challenging decisions are not best made in a worked up frenzy. If you feel yourself getting frustrated, take a step back and take time to think it over. If you have the luxury of time, then focus on the decision making process privately, at home or in a safe space where you can relax and are free to mull it over. If you need to sleep on it and think more about it with a clear head, then do so.
Some business decisions do not provide the luxury of a large amount of time to debate, however, and you may need to make some decisions effectively and quickly, according to a deadline (which may even be same day).
If this is the case, do everything in your power to avoid the situation becoming stressed or hectic, breathe and focus on the decision until you have comfortably come to a conclusion.