Do you struggle with making the best business decisions? Do you get anxious, stressed, and worried when you have to decide whether to buy or build new software?
As a busy professional, you’re constantly making decisions. These can influence how your company cuts costs, choose vendors and make investments. In the short and long term, your ability to make smart decisions can affect bottom-line profits.
If you’ve been grappling with the entire topic of decision-making, here is a simple 4-step method to slash the stress.
Use A Blueprint.
Work can get hectic. If you’re juggling a lot of IT projects, balance sheets, and lengthy proposals, you need to get your head into a clearer place.
The fastest way to do this? Go old school and get out a pencil. Draw a four-panel windowpane on a sheet of paper. If you prefer, work on a clear board, or whiteboard. Sketch out four squares to organize your decision-making.
Not so tough, right?
Employ the 4 D’s.
A classic decision-making framework is called the “4 D’s.” Each “D” stands for a critical aspect in deciding where to spend your time.
What are these sections? Delete. Defer. Delegate. Do.
Again, it’s kind of a relief. You don’t have to sweat over the headings of the categories. You may not know all the answers yet, but it feels great to have a process.
Let’s look at each section in turn.
This is the level of stuff you can put in the trash. Things you will never use. Offers for projects that have been completed. Notes and ideas that are no longer relevant. The more you can delete, the less you’ll have to deal with.
At first glance, the defer category may seem like a pseudonym for procrastination. But it’s not the case. Defer is the place for ideas, decisions, and investigations that are important – but still need more research.
In your organization, you may have gotten familiar with the habit of having virtual meetings. In the last year, most businesses have relied on remote IT teams to stay afloat. If this is the case, you already know how to run a productive virtual meeting.
You have identified best practices to complete an agenda, have personal contact, and achieve specific business goals. Deferring is a powerful choice to give everyone a chance to think things over, incubate, and reflect.
Whether you’re a solo entrepreneur or in a large company, you have a team. These people have strengths in areas that you don’t. That’s why delegating is so helpful. Professionals on your team can do the heavy lifting in areas that are not your strengths.
For example, with cloud expense management, you could delegate migration services to an IT professional, who loves combing over expense reports to find potential savings.
Deciding to take action is for this part of the framework. This is where you make a decision and move ahead.
For instance, if you have explored options for cloud expense management, you may be ready to decide on the best software for your organization.
Slash The Stress
In many ways, as professionals, it’s possible to find limitless opportunities to reduce stress.
We know that stress is tough on the body and mind. When we’re feeling stressed, it’s easy to get overly emotional and make poor decisions. Other signs of stress such as poor sleep quality, lack of exercise, and unfortunate nutritional choices may compound this.
If you’ve been seeking ways to find stress relief, you can apply the same “4 D’s” method to develop a personalized approach.
Although you may not be able to ‘delegate’ a specific function to a team member, you can give it to an aspect of yourself. For instance, you can nominate a part of yourself to take charge of creating the best conditions for quality sleep, exercise, or nutrition.
If you’ve been looking to slash the stress and make better decisions at work, try the “4 D’s” method. Boost your results by practicing stress relief. You and your team will feel the benefits of your efforts.