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When are you "ready"?

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« Sometimes It Is Better Not to ParticipateTransparency matters »

When are you "ready"?

09/01/09

Permalink 11:46:20 am, Categories: IT Leadership, Business Leadership

People often say "I'm not ready" or "I'm ready" when asked to take on a new task. But what do they really mean by these statements?

I've been working with a startup company for several months, advising them on their business plan and generally helping to steer them in a particular direction. As I talk to people who are knowledgeable about these things, I often get the comment that they "are/are not ready for the next stage", followed by a list of reasons that they are ready (or a list of things they need to do to be ready). These are pretty cut and dried cases and are easy to quantify.

As leaders of a business, we often have access to mountains of data (and sometimes, even, information) to help us make decisions. But as we move higher in an organization, we may be talking about decisions for which there is no (or little) data and we are still expected to lay out a path. As a mentor once told me, "The higher in the organization you go, the bigger the decisions you are expected to make with less data." Our years of experience, lessons learned from both successes and failures, and our ability to detect trends that others may not see all come together in making these decisions.

I would enjoy hearing about your experiences in making big decisions. Has your decision-making process changed through your career? Do you have tips to share? Feel free to share them in a comment.


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Don shares his experience and ideas about how to get the most value from your IT function. Note: The views and opinions expressed here are those of Don and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of his clients or employers.

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