Have you ever been confronted with an unpleasant task while leading your organization? Maybe you had to let someone go from their employment because of their actions or attitude?
Maybe you needed to make a change from a longtime vendor that had become too close to you and your organization? Maybe release a popular member of your sales team because they just weren’t working out?
Well, welcome to being in charge.
Leaders are often confronted with difficult decisions that must be taken. Some personal, some business. Who do you promote, who do you demote? How do you decide? For these important HR-type decisions, I suggest you fall back on your professional training and talk to others at similar levels of leadership in other organizations. Talk to trusted mentors who have played an important role in your ascension to your current position. Read a blog or a book on ’how to make' difficult decisions. I also recommend "Leadership from 30,000 Feet" to see how high-level Air Force Generals made critical, sometimes lifesaving decisions in their career.
As a leader, you are entrusted to lead your organization because your superiors or shareholders saw something in you. Or maybe they were just taking an opportunity to see “what you’re made of”. Regardless of why you got your position, you are there so act like the leader that your company needs and relies on. Make the difficult decisions, have the courage to stand up and lead.
During my time as a County Commissioner, I made hundreds and hundreds of decisions and votes. Some were routine and ordinary, but others had great weight. A lot of money was decided by my votes on the county commission regarding important issues. I always took those decisions seriously and gave them extra thought and consideration. By making sure I was prepared for the discussion and staff meetings, I was able to make the most informed decisions I could.
The same could be said in your business. Do your research, prepare for the discussion, and decide. Quite often, it is that matter of fact way of doing business that leads to the best performance by your whole team.
And remember, anyone can lead when things are going well…you will earn your paycheck when times are tough.