Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Delaying decisions

I once worked for the president of a company who never made decisions. You could go to this guy with an incredible amount of data, a clear point of view and a solid strategy. Still, he wouldn't make a decision. Eventually, he was ousted from the company. I have since recognized this as a pattern in many senior leaders. The slow decision making can be frustrating for an employee waiting to bring a project to conclusion. What is the cause of the slow decision making?

There can be many reasons a leader is delaying decision making. In my experience, a leader would like as much information possible to make sure they are making an informed choice. Often, time alone can help confirm the quality of data. Other times, that leader wants to gain support from corporate partners or clients before resolving the issue. I have also seen a leader delay moving a project forward because they do not want to be accountable for the outcome. Fear can be very powerful.

In the end, if you are waiting for a decision on a project you want to move forward, think about how you can help your leader. What is their hesitation on finalizing the decision? Where can you alleviate some remaining concerns around the project? How can you help them gain support from corporate partners or clients? How can you ‘manage up’?

If you want to learn more about career coaching go to

No comments:

Post a Comment