Leading Without Overstepping

Transform Your Decision-Making Approach

Decision-making is hard, and as leaders, we often feel the urge to step in and fix problems ourselves. This might seem heroic, but it can lead to wrong decisions. People closer to the problem have a better understanding and can make more informed decisions.

When you haven’t established yourself as a leader, the team might not challenge your authority even if they disagree with your decisions. This often leads to poor outcomes. The key is to resist the temptation to always jump in and take over.

You might wonder, “If I can’t make a decision, then what should I do?” Leaders should step aside as much as possible and let the team decide. This doesn’t mean abandoning them; instead, stay with the team, help them navigate their discussions, and support them throughout the journey. The more you do this, the less you’ll need to be there constantly. Invite debates and discuss the flaws and strengths of different approaches. Encourage the team to challenge the idea, especially if you end up advocating for it.

Many of us are tempted to take shortcuts by thinking, “You aren’t gonna need it,” and skip discussing trade-offs. This approach is incomplete and unhelpful. There is a good chance you might not need some details, but you won’t know until you discuss the matter thoroughly. Deciding without the necessary information is like trying to find your shirt in a dark closet. You might find something, but you don’t know if it fits. Instead of skipping crucial discussions, time-box them or set a date to make the decision and work towards it. This ensures that decisions are made with sufficient information and consideration.

This post is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0 by the author.