I attended an IT business conference in Nashville TN last year, where David Allen, best-selling author of “Getting Things Done”, conveyed the importance of being able to get the millions of ideas, to-dos, plans and actions out of your mind and into a system that you can trust on for getting it done, at the appropriate time, in the appropriate order. For years now, I’ve walked around with a pen and paper as a means of getting the random ideas and actions out of my head so I don’t have the stress of trying to remember them AND clearing my head so I can effectively work on the task at hand with my full attention, without having other to-dos on my mind.
But more importantly, his presentation underscored a trait of highly successful people: decisiveness.
Now I am no fun to go shopping with (what blokes are?). I don’t linger or wander. I decide if I want something and I buy it.
A few months ago I had a call from an online marketing company offering me their Adwords service (Adwords is running ads on Google to promote your business or service). After talking for 10mins I agreed to pay $2000 setup fee and $200 a month for the service. Now this had nothing to do with their selling skills. I could have finished the call with…”let me think about it” and do the phone tag thing for the next week or so while they chased me every day for an answer. I have enough on my plate without been chased by a sales guy!
It had has everything to do with how decisive I have trained myself to be. My thoughts are this: I’m willing to put a few grand into this as a test; it’s the true method for determining whether or not this is a viable method for prospecting for us. I know my cost per lead and cost per sale, so it was very easy for me to convey specific objectives that have to be achieved for this investment.
What’s to “think over”? I’ve already got too much on my mind and don’t need another open item to think about. Better to make a decision and act on it; the worst that can happen is that I will be out of pocket a few grand for a marketing test. I can live with that, and I will, without doubt, learn and gain something.
I see far too many business owners overburden their mind “thinking it over,” whatever the decision. This is NOT how highly successful CEO’s behave. Of course, some decisions need to be taken with care and deliberation.
What your practices mission is, for example, should take thought. The colour of your brochure/website/business cards, not so much. Yet I see business owners piddling around for hours, days and even months over insignificant decisions such as the colour of their logo.
Decide. Act. Move on. In this world, the fast eat the slow.
Ian Enticott – Technology For Accountants – Website: http://www.technologyforaccountants.com.au/