Are you making the right choices for your service business? And are you getting stuff done fast enough for it to make a difference? If not, I’m going to help you.
Decision-making is one thing that I see a lot of service business owners struggle with.
In fact, a lot of them don’t even know how to make a decision.
And the ones that do often take too damn long to do it. That’s even worse.
Either way, it means that the important decisions needed inside their businesses get pushed back. As a result, whatever issue they need to confront has already become massive.
And by the time you pull the trigger, it’s too late.
You’ve missed an opportunity to address it while it’s easiest to do so. Or, you’ve allowed a problem to fester inside your service business for so long that it’s already having a negative effect on your results.
Ultimately, your service business won’t grow as quickly as it should. And if this pattern continues, it may just start going in the opposite direction.
I don’t want that to happen to you, which is why I’m going to share five tips for a better and faster decision making.
Tip #1 – Recognize That Every Day That Goes By Costs You Something
You know that you need to make a change in your service business.
And you’re aware that the way you’re doing things right now isn’t working.
The fact is, you sacrifice something for each day you fail to make a decision. It’s another day that you don’t confront a problem or don’t take advantage of an opportunity. Either your problems get worse, or you give up an opportunity.
And it’s crucial that you understand this simple fact:
The longer you wait, the more it costs you.
Tip #2 – You Don’t Have to Make 100% of Your Shots (You Just Have to Shoot More Than Everybody Else)
I like to compare making decisions to archery.
You could spend all of your time focusing on pulling back the bow. You keep pulling, and pulling, and pulling some more. You’re constantly lining up the shot while you ask yourself some questions:
Will I hit the target?
Have I pulled the bow back far enough?
Or maybe I’ve pulled it back too far?
Should I shoot now?
But what’s happening on the other side while you’re still trying to make your mind up?
The other guy’s already taking shots. They’ve made the decision that they’re going to shoot now and ask questions later.
Guess who’s going to get stuff done?
The thing is, a bunch of their shots will probably miss the target. But that doesn’t matter, because some of those shots will still end up where the other guy needs them to go.
The simple message here is that you miss 100% of the shots that you don’t take. So stop worrying about missing and start shooting.
It doesn’t have to be perfect.
It just has to be done.
Tip #3 – Create Your Decision-Making Criteria
If you want to make faster and better decisions, you’ve got to have some criteria. You need to know some things before you act.
What’s the problem that you need to solve?
What do you have to sacrifice if you make this decision?
What happens if you don’t make this decision?
Is there a return on investment if this works out?
I want you to come up with a bunch of quick questions you have to answer every time you need to make a decision.
Just rattle through your criteria to give yourself an overview of the whole decision. The details only start to matter if you get to establish that making this particular decision could have a positive impact on your business.
Tip #4 – Remember the Three-Letter Word
I want you to scream out a single three-letter word whenever you have a decision to make: “Why!”
Why am I doing this?
Why do I want to do this?
So many service business owners don’t ask that question. And these are invariably the guys that don’t know how to decide. They’re not looking at the long-term reasons for doing what they’re doing.
They just do something without really thinking about it.
When I tell you to decide fast, I don’t mean do it recklessly. If there’s no ‘why’ behind the decision that you’re making, you’re probably making the wrong choice.
Tip #5 – Ask the Three Main Questions
What are these three main questions, you ask?
They’re three things that you need to ask about any decision that you make. Even if you don’t set your criteria or ask yourself why, you still need to ask these three things:
What Does it Do for My Clients?
You’ve got to create clarity here. It’s not enough to say that something’s going to help you to offer great service. You need to get specific on exactly what making this decision will do for your clients.
Because without clarity, you can’t achieve alignment.
What Does it Do for My Employees?
Remember, this isn’t just about you.
You’re a service business owner, which means you have a whole bunch of people working with you on your business. You’ve got to think about the effects that a decision will have on them too.
It’s no use making life easier for yourself if you make it so hard on your employees that they start to hate you.
What Does it Do for My Company?
The key thing here is that the thing you’re making the decision about has to overcome a weakness. It has to solve a specific problem within your service business.
Getting specific is really important here, too. If you’re just implementing something for the sake of having it, you’re probably making the wrong choice.
And choose quickly using the right criteria!
These tips I’ve shared here will help you create your own criteria. The key is to find the balance between knowing what you need to know and taking action. Spend too long trying to figure things out and you’ll miss your shot.
Shoot recklessly before going through your criteria, and you could damage your service business.
I’m going to wrap this up with a question…
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