How are making a great fly cast or hitting a good golf shot related to managing your business successfully? The answer is that they all require knowledge, experience, and timing. Strategy, planning and practice are important for each skill, and lastly - the ability to execute, especially in difficult situations is essential.
When casting a fly to a moving target, the key action is to know precisely when to release the cast. When hitting a golf shot, especially under pressure, it is how the golf club is delivered to the ball with the correct timing at the moment of impact. The success or failure of the action taken is directly related to the quality of the preparation and practice that preceded it. The better and more focused the preparation, the better the result.
Business organizations make scores of instant decisions every day. Most are made routinely, without thinking. But important decisions, especially critical decisions, require knowledge. Organizations that are not prepared will make poorly-informed decisions at critical moments. The consequences can be devastating, especially to a small business that does not have the resources to recover.
In casting a fly or hitting a golf shot, the result is experienced in the moment. With awareness, corrective action can be taken for the next attempt. A bad cast may mean a lost fish. Cause and effect are instantaneous. A bad business decision could cost the owner the company because its cause and effect may be separated by time and space and the longer the time between the two, the more difficult it will be to connect them.
In business, everything possible must be done prior to those times when a critical decision has to be made to make the best-informed, lowest-risk decision. People need to know what to do.
How does a business reduce risk of making a bad decision or critical error? It is through the process of thinking strategically and planning. The organization gets to develop, practice, and test their assumptions on paper, when planning. The more this process is practiced, the better prepared every person in the organization is to make better decisions. Make the mistakes in the planning work. The quality of all decisions becomes based on what has been experienced in the planning process. With this, people in the organization will know what to do, especially in crises.
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