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4 Steps to Make Your Decision a Commitment

December 01, 20225 min read

There’s a difference between decision and commitment.  

It’s easy to decide to improve your business.  But not always easy to follow through.

That decision requires change.  

The reward, the payoff, the outcome you seek, only happens when your decision becomes a commitment.  One you’ll stick with ‘til your goal is achieved.

If you’ve ever failed to follow through on a decision, you know what I’m talking about.

So, what goes into making a good decision?  One that becomes a commitment?  

One you can build support for?  One that will yield the results you’re after?

Being crystal clear about four things from the start, will help you develop the confidence, determination, and support necessary to see your changes through to completion.

1.       Know your starting point.

Ask yourself: Where am I now?   (Describe your current situation.)

  • What is it that I want to change from?  

  • To be rid of?  

  • To improve?   

What are the problems or symptoms I’m dealing with?

  • Uncertainty

  • Frustration

  • Inconsistent sales or productivity 

  • Eroding profitability

  • Poor morale or work ethic

What got me here?  What are the causes or obstacles?  

  • People? Processes? Culture? Resources? Lack of Vision? Lack of Training? Inconsistency? All of the above?

  • List the issues, and be specific.

Knowing the causes and obstacles of your current situation will help you understand the challenges you'll need to avoid or overcome. They will also help you decide whether to go over, under, around, or through, as you make a commitment on what and how to change when you get to Step #4.

Skipping this step could leave you:

  • “Fixing” the wrong thing(s).

  • Wasting valuable time, effort, and resources. 

  • Losing traction and credibility with your team.

2.       Know your goal(s).

Ask yourself: What is it I want to achieve?  

  • Is it a problem I want to solve? 

  • Is it a new way to run my life, my team, or business? 

Wring this all the way out.  Get clear about the goals you want to accomplish, and why

List any objectives you have along with your goals.  Be specific. Otherwise, these will just remain good intentions. 

For example: Many business leaders decide, and set a goal of energizing their team.  The achiever will know and list their objectives and targets.  Then adjust their leadership approach and intensity until they succeed.  Their objectives might be to:

  • Improve the customer experience (earning 20 Google reviews of 4.2+).

  • Reduce employee turnover (to less than 15% per year).

  • Increase sales (by 10%+ over prior year).

Skipping this step could leave you and your team:

  • Uncertain about the steps to focus on and actions to take.

  • Confused about where you are in the process.

  • Frustrated because you’re not sure if or when you’ve reached your goal. 

Pro Tip: 

Many business leaders “decide” to eliminate problems or frustrations without defining what they want instead. 

They’re going from “A” to “not A”, rather than going from “A” to “B”. 

Defining “B” will help with Step #4, and escalate your decision to a commitment that you and your team will be far more likely to achieve.

3.       Know your "why".

Knowing the “why” is vital.  It’s what will keep you going when challenges arise. 

It also inspires others to give their support and assistance.  

Write all of the reasons and benefits for your decision.  For the business.  For others,  For yourself.

Use them to remind yourself and your team to stay focused on the goal, and determined to succeed. 

Getting clarity on what you want and why will help you craft a plan and commitment to achieve your goal and objectives.

Skipping this step could leave you and your team:

  • Lacking the drive or inspiration to overcome challenges that will certainly arise.

  • Unwilling to make and sustain the effort required to succeed with the change.

  • Unable to justify or assemble necessary and support resources. 

4.  Create your plan. (This is the fun part!)

Ask yourself: What are my ideas for a solution (or solutions)?  

  • How can we best get from “A” to “B”?

  • What mindset, behaviors and habits will contribute to me reaching my goals? 

  • Who should I ask for input or assistance?

  • Are there any good alternatives?

Jot down your initial ideas about how to best achieve your goals.

You’ll have something to bounce off of others who will affirm your plan or offer helpful alternatives. 

Being open to other perspectives and strategies will also generate support for your decision and open up more resources that perhaps you hadn’t seen or considered.

Skipping this step could leave you:

  • Uncertain about where to start or how to proceed once underway.

  • Unaware of resources you’ll need or where to find support.

  • Frustrated by lack of progress, due to the absence of a shared vision and plan. 

Making your decision a commitment 

Taking these 4 steps will help you become crystal clear, and transform your ‘decision’ into a commitment.

One you’ll stick with ‘til your goal is achieved.    No. Matter. What.

…And perhaps transform your life and business in the process.  

Making good decisions and commitments is the first step of Changing Lanes for Business

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Tim Rhode

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