Eric and Stephanie are getting married. They met at a dance, dated for a while and then made the big decision. They even decided to live together before the wedding. Essentially, they collected data about each other and then committed. Are they certain that their future together will be happy until “death do us part”? Of course not! There’s no way to be certain. However, they believe that they will be happy and they are clear about their commitment.
Most business decisions of any significance are just like that. You need some data to make the decision. You might try an idea out for size by modeling it or running a pilot project. But if you wait for enough data to be certain that you’re making the right decision, you’ll never act.
Tough decisions are about the future and the future is never certain. Should I hire this person? Should I invest in this new product? Should I sign this contract? Expand in this market? Acquire this company? Let this company acquire mine? Start a business? End a business? These are all tough decisions.
Get some data. Try the decision on for size if you can. But forget about certainty; strive instead for clarity.
Eric and Stephanie could have lived together for years before committing to marriage. But they didn’t. They learned about each other, tried the decision on for size and made a commitment. They are clear.
Congratulations to them both.