Given that we are living in one of the toughest business climates which most of us have ever witnessed, there really is no room for mistakes. The critical success factor within this is making the right decisions for the business, at the right time and based on the right information. We have seen businesses big and small forced to close their doors this year, some because of the pandemic, others which simply had their weaknesses highlighted by the events of the year.
The odds aren’t stacked in favor of businesses, as just under half don’t make it to 3 years and half of those which do will not make it beyond year 5. At the heart of a great business is the ability to make informed decisions based on facts and figures, devoid of emotion and sentiment, and here is how to make sure that happens.
Gathering of Information
There are 4 critical points with regards to making informed decisions. The first of these is looking at the way in which your business acquires, organizes, and disseminates appropriate and, most importantly, accurate information. This focuses on the raw data, where it comes from, how the data is stored and categorized, and how you are able to extract what you need from that data.
Creating a Network
Informed decisions are not made on a whim; they should be discussed by a trusted team which has a culture focused on the assessment of information and the ability to analytically process it. Within a network, businesses should have a variety of specializations which can offer vital inputs in the decision-making process.
Threat and Opportunity
From the outset, a team should have identified the possible threats and opportunities which the business may be presented with. Much of decision making is about reacting to situations, but a larger part of making the right decisions at the right time is about pre-empting them. Through the creation of an early warning system with regards to the threats and opportunities which your business may see, you can speed up the reaction that the company takes should those things occur.
Focus on Speed
As this year has clearly showcased, the ability to make the right decision at speed is absolutely critical. We have seen microbreweries that switched production to alcohol gel in a matter of days, textile companies which began churning out face masks using their machinery, and even law firms like Prime Lawyers reaching out to struggling families to offer advice. There must be a clear focus on making informed decisions in the business, but doing so without delay and without over-analyzing the situation. In order to achieve this, the business needs to adopt a tried-and-tested process which it can apply to all problems the business is faced with. Once this process is streamlined, businesses can act fast and make right decisions that will ensure success.
This is one of the most critical factors in any business.
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