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Six steps to making tough decisions as a leader

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Over the last few months, I’ve watched a few clients struggle with tough decisions that needed to be made. Some involved releasing personnel and others involved decisions that would affect the success of the business. In every case, my clients went back and forth on many occasions, trying to avoid costly mistakes and manage the emotional feelings that came with the decision.

1. Lean on trusted advisors. Wise leaders surround themselves with the counsel of advisors who bring varying experiences and the ability to see a problem from many different angles.

2. Be prepared to fail.
No leader likes to fail, but not all your decisions will be great ones. The key is to admit it when you make a mistake, and try to limit the number of mistakes.

3. Get the right information. Before you can decide what to do, you must have all the facts and information that could affect your decision.

4. You will be criticized. With every decision will come supporters and critics. Being able to acknowledge, respond and sometimes ignore your critics is an essential part of how you handle the pressure of decision making.

5. Don’t procrastinate. In an effort to avoid making a decision, some leaders prolong the process by constantly procrastinating. Get it over with as you are probably causing yourself and those waiting on your decision more stress and frustration.

6. Stand by your decision. When you finally decide, stand by your word and defend it. Don’ t waffle or you will be seen as weak and ineffective.

Karen Hinds is “The Workplace Success Expert.”

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