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How to make confident work decisions

As entrepreneurs we are often faced with difficult decisions. Who do we market our products to? Where do we source them? Is investing now a good idea? With so many things to consider, it can be easy to become overwhelmed.

Whenever you need to make a big decision, these seven steps can help you make the right one.

1. Write down your problem

Write down as much as you can about the decision you need to make. If your problem is with finding a supplier, for example, write down exactly what you want, who you know and your experiences so far.

Writing things down can unlock ideas and bring clarity.

2. List the pros and cons

Once you have written down all the information, break it into pros and cons. Who are the parties involved? What do they contribute? What are they lacking?

While pro and con lists rarely provide concrete answers, they can help you sift through and sort information.

3. Sleep on it

I can’t count the times I have been 100% convinced of an idea only to dislike it the next day. When I shop online, I leave things in my basket overnight. When I am working on a project, I review it the next day before I submit it.

Just one night’s sleep can help you make a decision you can stick to!

4. Call a friend

In university I studied philosophy. I would often become so frustrated with terminology and other people's research that I would not be able to think straight.

In times like those I would call friends who knew absolutely nothing about philosophy, and their common-sense answers to my problems would help me see much clearer.

Sometimes when we are struggling to make a decision it is because we are too close to the problem.

There is such a thing as knowing too much! Call a friend, ask them for their opinion, and then ask them exactly why they think what they do. It always helps to see things from an outside perspective.

5. Set a deadline

If you have a big decision to make, set yourself a deadline.

Write down in your calendar exactly when you need to make your decision by. There is nothing worse than simply putting off things forever because you can’t make up your mind.

Sometimes it is better to take the wrong step than it is to stay still, so try to keep moving forward.

6. Trust your gut

Once you have made your decision, stick to it. Make sure that you follow through with what you have decided on!

Remember that owning a business is a constant learning experience and it is okay to make mistakes. Take some of the pressure off yourself.

7. Reflect

After you have followed through with your decision, reflect on it. What did you learn? What was easy, what was hard? What would you do differently next time?

- Lena Klein

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