“It’s difficult” is a lousy excuse for not doing something.
It’s striking, however, how many teams will work exceptionally long hours because team members are unwilling or unable to make “difficult” decisions.
Last week we supported a team that shifted how they framed the difficult tasks in front of them. Here’s what that modification sounded like:
- “We should tell the truth even if it makes us uncomfortable” became: “We should tell the truth because it makes us uncomfortable.”
- “We should ask tough questions even if we don’t like the answers” became: “We should ask the tough questions because we’ll get the answers the business needs.”
- “We should celebrate our progress even if they want to focus on what’s not working” became: “We should celebrate so we’ll be more effective at addressing what’s not working.”
- “We should take the calculated risk even though we don’t have all the data” became: “We should take action because we’ve collected the necessary data.”
Are your team members avoiding decisions because they’re afraid of perceived consequences? That fear is diminished when they no longer see the consequences as problematic.
It’s likely your team needs to have a discussion it’s been avoiding. A decision your business is waiting for you to make awaits on the other side.