Hesitation is often the harbinger of missed opportunity. The essence of leadership lies not just in the ability to make decisions, but in the resolve to act on them decisively. This is where the philosophy of “do it” comes into play, serving as a powerful mantra for leaders who wish to navigate the complex landscape of modern business with confidence and clarity.

The ‘Do It’ approach to decision-making is more than an impulsive call to action; it’s a cultivated mindset that enables leaders to cut through the noise and act with precision. Paraphrasing former IBM CEO, Louis Gerstner Jr:

It is not about having a vision — it’s about people making things happen to serve customers.

This perspective underscores the importance of decisiveness as a cornerstone of effective leadership, urging leaders and teams to move from deliberation to action, from planning to execution.

Understanding Decision Dynamics

Decision-making in leadership is a dynamic process that balances analytical thinking with intuitive judgement. The ‘Do It’ philosophy doesn’t disregard the importance of careful analysis; rather, it emphasizes the need to act once a reasonable assessment has been made. It’s about recognizing that perfect information is a rarity and that waiting for it often leads to missed opportunities.

Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s founder, encapsulated this notion when he spoke about making decisions with 70% of the information you need. He highlighted that waiting for 90% or more often means being too slow. In this way, the ‘Do It’ mindset is about making informed decisions swiftly and adapting as needed, embodying the agile leadership necessary to both support and drive our teams forward.

Fostering Confidence and Conviction

The foundation of the ‘Do It’ approach is built on confidence and conviction. Confidence in leadership is not innate; it is developed through experiences and the understanding that not every decision will be flawless. When viewed in this way, you will see that each decision provides a valuable learning opportunity – even if that lesson may be painful or challenging.

Conviction, meanwhile, enables leaders to stand firm in their decisions, especially in challenging times. Conviction is a force multiplier and it adds power and energy to your words and actions. This blend of confidence and conviction equips leaders with the fortitude to say ‘Do It’ and mean it, ensuring that decisions are not just made but are acted upon with determination.

Navigating Analysis Paralysis

A common obstacle in decision-making is analysis paralysis – the state where overthinking leads to inaction. This affliction runs counter to the ‘Do It’ ethos, which advocates for progress over perfection. Leaders must recognize when deliberation is becoming detrimental and course-correct towards action. Techniques to combat this include setting strict timelines for decisions, prioritizing tasks, and trusting one’s instincts. As Dwight D. Eisenhower once said, “What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.” This wisdom encourages leaders to focus on what truly matters, making decisions efficiently and effectively.

Practical Steps to ‘Do It’

To truly embrace the ‘Do It’ philosophy, leaders should consider the following actionable steps:

  • Develop a streamlined decision-making framework to assess options quickly.
  • Implement time-bound decision processes to prevent stagnation.
  • Foster a culture where outcomes, whether successful or not, are seen as learning opportunities.
  • Engage in regular reflective practices to hone decision-making skills.

These strategies not only promote a more decisive leadership style but also encourage a culture of continuous improvement and learning within your organization.

Incorporating the ‘Do It’ Philosophy into Leadership Practice

As I have explained, strategy is important, but what can you do to embrace this approach? How might you integrate it into the very fabric of your organizational leadership?

What can you do to create an environment where decisiveness is valued and encouraged at all levels?

Leaders must lead by example, demonstrating the ‘Do It’ approach in their actions and decision-making processes. Start here. By doing so, you set a precedent for others to follow, fostering a collective mindset of assertiveness and action within the organization. Get to it!

Nina Nets It Out: The ‘Do It’ philosophy is an imperative for effective leadership. It champions the power of decisive action, urging leaders to move beyond deliberation to execution. By adopting this approach, leaders can steer their organizations through uncertainty with proactive and confident decision-making, transforming challenges into opportunities for growth and success. Let us remember the potency of the ‘Do It’ mantra: it’s not just about making decisions; it’s about making them happen.