Going from the gut is necessary, sometimes. Entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, inventors and many more simply wouldn’t succeed if they didn’t sometimes follow their heart or their gut. When is it right to make a decision purely based on the facts then?
It all depends on your comfort level with risk and what you’re risking, really. No risk, no reward as the saying goes. I bet we all have a risk tolerance number. Say it’s between 1 and 100. 100 being the riskiest of all. I’m probably a 73. I’d like to be a 77.
Of course, it depends on what’s on the line. I don’t mind giving someone bragging rights to say “I told you so.” That definitely doesn’t enter the decision making process for me. However, the more people who disagree with me, the more I do listen before deciding.
What’s funny is why we don’t listen and take advice more often. It must be like 16 year old getting their license. We know they’ll be in an accident sooner or later, but they disagree with all their might. Then, statistics are proven right, yet again. It’s the same in business.
Recently, I was giving advice, probably unsolicited knowing me, to a friend who as about to embark on their first employee firing. While I sometimes think this can be fun, that’s definitely not the norm.
Anyway, he proceeded to ignore all my sage advice even though the risk for following was non-existent. He fired the employee, but allowed them to have access to their computer post-firing. After the employee had deleted all their emails, recently developed marketing materials, and was about to venture into server land, my friend took his laptop and his privileges. IF only…
It was such a simple piece of advice – but, alas, he had a great relationship with that employee. There’s no doubt it set that company back a few days of work – just that one mistake.
IF only they had done everything they were supposed to. Any book, any online column, any seasoned veteran would have told them what to do, but it wouldn’t have mattered. Do what you’re supposed to do.