Sunday, November 8, 2009

In the Blink of an Eye

I've been thinking, "My boss is really good at quick decisions and I kind of suck at it..." I even read that book "Blink" in June although it turned out to be more about trusting your gut instinct than snappy comebacks.

I needed to fill for my boss but I didn't have enough info or enough time to get the info so I turned out to be wishy-washy and annoying instead of helpful. Worse yet, this exact situation happened almost exactly the same way back around Memorial Day. So why didn't I do better this time?

I'm used to doing cost-benefit analyses. I'm used to going for accurate decisions not necessarily snap decisions. I hate inconveniencing anybody ever. I think of this person as a peer not a subordinate so could only offer an opinion not a decision. I think the answer is yes but there is conflicting info so I can't be 100% sure so maybe that means no...

But then I realized my boss has resources I don't. If he was there, he would have gotten my "67% yes" opinion hours before, turned it into a firm yes and everyone would be happy.

I have some goals to improve. I have to know my audience. My boss and other manager like to talk things out so we can all be on the same page. So for others who only need the answer I should just say "I'll get back to you." Come to a decision, plan on second-guessing myself on purpose, work through that and don't come back with any answer until I go through it again. Still doesn't sound fast... I'll set a 20 minute time limit.

I'm going to start making notes of my hunches before my analyses and see how they match. I've had pretty good intuition over the years. I'm used to keeping tabs on how things are and "Huh, that's weird..." has led to problems and solutions. I'm dedicated to continuous improvement ("Kaizen!" : ) and working on different fronts simultaneously, balancing sales efforts with expenses, lead times and forecasts, etc. So as long as I stay connected, I should be able to trust my own judgement.

2 comments:

Sue said...

Don't be too hard on yourself. For one thing, part of your boss's ability to make quick decisions is a result of being in the position of boss. Think of it this way, when you answer a question for someone on the same level as you, if you are wrong, then both you and the person you answered will have to answer to the boss for what went wrong. But if one asks a question of the boss, and the boss gets it wrong, then you are blameless, and the boss only answers to him/herself. As a boss that would give you less to worry about in making quick decisions.

Qaro said...

I'm not quite right about all my thoughts, I don't mean any disrespect for my boss at all, quite the opposite.

I'm just happy when I get to worry about things like work...