The people I respect most in business are generally instant decision-makers. Sure, if data is available, it is considered but they don’t need to know every “minute” fact first. Confident decision-makers accept in advance that they are bound to make a fair share of wrong decisions, yet they are also confident in knowing that, most of the time, they will make the right decisions.
My friend and mentor Nido Qubien has a four-step decision-making method he shared with me that takes the risk out of decision-making.
Initially, he said, you must be willing to take a risk with your decisions, but as he emphasizes, “There is a difference between risk management and risk aversion.”
Here’s Nido’s four-step formula to managing risk and making confident decisions:
1. Ask the question, “What is the best possible outcome that can occur if you were to move forward with your decision?” Then remove the rose-colored glasses, and ask the second question.
2. What is the most likely outcome that can occur if you decide to venture forward? In most cases, you will find the most likely outcome is the probable-case scenario. If the most likely outcome will move you toward your goal, then you are probably on the path to the right choice.
3. You have now pondered the best and the most likely outcomes, so step three is to ask, “What is the worst possible outcome of this decision?
4. Finally, ask yourself if the worst possible outcome should occur, are you willing to subject yourself and/or family to it?
After thinking through the outcomes, if you conclude that the most likely one will take you where you want to go but, if the worst outcome happens, you can live with it, then launch ahead confidently.
A final bit of advice – Most decisions are self-fulfilling prophecies. A lot of seemingly great decisions have worked; not because of the quality of the decisions, but rather because of the determination to make them work. Conversely, a lot of good decisions fail because the people who make them undermine their chances for success by not conquering their doubts.
Hiring Practices: How Long Does It Take You to Make a Decision?
Most executives decide whether or not a job candidate is suitable for the position in only four or five minutes, and then spend the rest of the interview looking for additional information to confirm their decisions. One study showed that 74 percent of the executives determine the suitability of the applicant within five minutes.
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