Tough decisions: short-term pain for long-term gain

Tough decisions: short-term pain for long-term gain

Making tough business decisions can be agonising. Here’s how to make difficult choices at your workshop to ensure success.

To be successful in business you have to make good decisions. But good decisions aren’t always easy to make.

In fact, often the decisions that will make your business more efficient, profitable and competitive are the hardest to make.

Do you invest in expensive equipment, like new hoists? Do you upscale, and open that second workshop? Do you have to let a bad performing team member go?

If you’ve been in business a long time, you’ve probably tackled the decisions above before. But that doesn’t mean other difficult decisions aren’t around the corner.

Is it time for retirement and what does life after the workshop look like? Is it time to decide on a succession plan? Is it time to sell? For some business owners, these are perhaps the toughest questions of all.

How to make a tough decision in business

Well-known life coach and business strategist Tony Robbins has a four-step guide for all decision-making – large and small.

1. Write it down

If you try to make a decision in your head, you’re likely to go around and around in circles. Writing it down helps crystallise things. Make a note of the decision to be made and all the pros and cons, goals, and consequences.

2. Be clear about your feelings

Once you have made your decision, clarify in your mind the reasons behind it and keep reminding yourself of them – especially if carrying out the decision becomes hard. If you don’t, you might fail to follow through. If you define your reasoning, you’re more likely to be satisfied with your decision.

3. Let go of fear

Don’t let fear ruin your life (or your business). Robbins says when we’re fearful, things don’t work out – and it can become an excuse to do nothing. Back yourself!

4. Remember your values

Any decision you make should be in line with your personal and your business values. If you’re struggling to make a decision because there are so many potential outcomes, choose a path that aligns with your values. You might not achieve everything you wanted, but you’ll be better off.

Making tough decisions is essential to business success

Customer service expert and New York Times bestselling business author Shep Hyken says it’s important to remember that no venture ever achieved success without facing tough decisions.

“Hope is not a strategy,” he said. “You can’t just hope it gets better. Nothing gets better without effort.”

But, he said, once you understand the problem your decision-making will solve, suddenly “the decision may not seem so tough after all”.

"If you want to compete in business, you must make good decisions — often tough decisions — that will put your organisation in a position to win."

This article was published 21/05/2020 and the content is current as at the date of publication.