Five Things I’ve learned about making tough decisions

Managing a fulfillment operation or contact center can be extremely challenging.  Every operation is unique and failure to make the right decision may have a negative impact on you and your company’s reputation.

Fortunately, there’s always a few experts who are willing to help out (I say that sarcastically).

Here are five things I’ve learned about making tough decisions.

1.) Don’t trust the “Experts” – And that goes for me as well.

As much as the “experts” think they know your operation, they’ll never know it better than you. Your business rules are unique to your operation and off the shelf systems and equipment are rarely the answer. These solutions may address current opportunities in your workflow, but they’ll most likely reduce your flexibility at a critical stage in your growth.

Getting an outside opinion is always a great idea, but make sure it passes your operation’s reality/logic test before just assuming a solution is right for you.


2.) Seek the advice of those you trust – There’s an excellent chance they’ve been faced with a similar situation.  Their answers may not be perfect, but at least you know they have your best interest and not trying to sell you something.

3.) Find an opposing opinion – A healthy debate is a great way to find the overall best solution. Don’t take it personally and listen with an open mind.  When you’re ready to throw your opposing opinion off a cliff, you’re ready to move on to #4.

4.) Sleep on it – Find some quiet time to reflect and process the information you’ve acquired.  Take a walk, run, or even the commute home can be a great time to reflect.

At one point in my career, I had a 1hr and 45min drive to and from work.  This drive was directly responsible for some great ideas and decisions that followed.

5.) Go with your gut – Now it’s time to make a decision.  You have the facts and you know your process better than anyone else.  Don’t over-analyze,  and don’t discount what your “gut” is telling you. And never forget, YOU ARE THE EXPERT!