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Archive for October, 2013

Why the best leaders take action first and ask questions later

There is an article written by the National Institute of Business Management that discusses the decision making process of the best leaders. The points made, particularly about timing, have struck a chord with me, and I want to share these words of wisdom. I have included a copy of the article for you to read…

Aspiring leaders often assume that their role models are successful because they make careful, deliberate decisions.

The truth is a little more complex. While it is true that executives who act impulsively–without considering available intelligence–risk making huge mistakes, it is also true that highly effective leaders believe quick action is the key to success.

Here’s why:

There is no answer book. Today’s global leaders face an extremely fluid marketplace. They are often better served by taking small steps to “test” their ideas–and learn more in the process.

Timing is everything. “Implementing the second-best idea now is a better strategy than doing the best idea a week from now. It’s a bigger risk to delay making decisions than to make marginal ones,” warned Stanford professor Charles O’Reilly in an issue of Entrepreneur.

Winning is a numbers game. Successful salespeople believe every “no” they get brings them one step closer to hearing “yes,” and thus do not fear taking risks. Great leaders make decisions with a similar mind-set. When a problem is particularly complex or novel, they trust their instincts because the chances of making mistakes are so great anyway.