top of page

I'm Considering Procrastination...

Updated: Mar 16, 2022

If you're faced with having to make a decision, welcome to the real world!

Leaders often have to make decisions that will have impacts on people and on business outcomes. Sometimes those decisions have to be made under time pressure and with incomplete information. When you find yourself in that situation, what will you do?

Will you wait until you have all the information you need in order to be 100% certain that you are making the right decision?

Will you ask your people to thoroughly research and analyse every possible factor that might influence your decision?

Sometimes you will have enough time and resources to be able to do that. But in a crisis, where urgent action is needed, you won't have that luxury. In that case, if you wait until you have gathered enough facts to be 100% sure then by the time you make your decision it will be too late. In a crisis, you will need to consider the facts that you do have and then be guided by your experience in similar, previous situations and by your intuition. Weigh it all up and then go with your gut feeling.

As a leader, you'll need to be familiar with the concept of "prudent risk". That is, the degree of risk that you can accept and that lies somewhere between over-caution and recklessness. Over-caution shows timidity and indecisiveness. Recklessness invites disaster and constitutes incompetence. Both are failures of leadership.

Excessive delay in fact-finding, information gathering and data analysis leads to "paralysis by analysis". That kind of procrastination is a misguided and often desperate attempt to reduce risk, but it actually leads to increased risk.

Likewise, jumping to conclusions and rushing headlong into an ill-considered, "knee-jerk" reaction to a situation also leads to increased risk.

Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to find the right balance between these two extremes.

4 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page