A good amount of our time is spent on deciding whether we are doing things the right way. Are we spending our time on the right things? Am I doing something the right way? Am I making the right decisions to further advance my career? From the New York Post, American couples spend 5.5 days (132 hours) a year deciding what to eat. How much time are we spending on selecting clothes, daily activities, and career opportunities?
As mentioned before, we need to gather information/data to better prepare ourselves for the future and understand our goals and build a plan to reach them in a timely manner. Once you have your goals set, then you can align your decisions to these goals. This should help make your decisions a little easier and execute them more swiftly. Decisions that do not impact your goals and are not life-threatening, can be made faster knowing they will not impact your overall journey to success.
If you want to become VP of Operations and are planning to be there in 5 years, a decision today on bagel with sesame seeds or bagel with poppy seeds should not affect your ability to be a VP of Operations in 5 years. Quickly think which one you want more now and decide, so you can move on with your day. At times we do spend time in excess on things that truly do not matter. If you are happy with either bagel, then why put so much thought into it? At one time, I would spend a few extra minutes looking for the perfect breakfast or lunch when I went to a fast food restaurant on the way to the office. Essentially I was wasting my time and the person’s time behind me in line. Now, I go in with confidence and select the first thing that I think is good. If it is not great, I’ll select something better next time. I have more important things to think about.
We need faster decisions for faster results. Our bosses are typically only looking for results and less of how we are getting there, unless they want us to apply those processes to the broader team because they were great processes with great results. There are a lot of smaller things that we can get caught up in, which is not what we want to do. We have limited time and need to focus our time in the more important areas that will yield the biggest results. I’ve learned to understand the key points and work from those. Technical expertise is important too, but I look at that as a prerequisite. We need to know what we are doing to get our job. The strategic mindset will help us get promoted.