Indecision comes with a high price. I think most of us in business try to make the best decisions possible, but really it becomes a matter of saying, “okay, do I have all the information I need?” And if I do, then make the decision. Say yes, say no, but make the decision.

David: Hi, and welcome to the podcast. In today’s episode, co host Jay McFarland and I are back with a talk on the high price of indecision. Welcome back, Jay.

Jay: Thank you so much. It’s such a pleasure to be here. And I think this is something that we all suffer with, especially in a new business, just knowing what you should do.

What are your priorities? How can you tell that? Paralysis by analysis is very common.

David: Yeah, no question. And I think some people are more wired to be decisive while others are more wired to be indecisive.

If you’re decisive, dealing with indecisive people is extremely frustrating.

And if you’re indecisive, dealing with decisive people can feel a little intimidating. So it’s a challenge.

Jay: Yeah. And I think sometimes you need both. I mean, if you’re sitting around waiting to make a decision. You could miss the perfect opportunity, right? But if you move too fast, you’re probably not going to be prepared for that situation.

So we got to find balance in the force here. How do we do that?

David: Great question. Yeah. I think missed opportunities is definitely the first thing we tend to think of when it comes to indecision. But if we’re trying to find balance in the force, then that would also mean talking about, well, should decisive people do anything differently?

And my guess is that’s kind of a quick one. My guess would be to say, all right, if you think you’re too decisive, then maybe you need to take a step back, aand consider things a little more. But in business, wow, it’s much more detrimental in most cases, in my opinion, to be indecisive. And there’s a great quote from Tom Watson that says:

“Solve it. Solve it quickly, solve it right or wrong. If you solve it wrong, it will come back and slap you in the face, and then you can solve it right. Lying dead in the water and doing nothing is a comfortable alternative because it is without risk, but it is an absolutely fatal way to manage a business.”

So there are lots of schools of thought on this. The bottom line for most of us is that you’re better off making a decision, because if it’s the wrong decision, you’ll find out sooner, and then you can change it and make a better decision.

If it’s the right decision, then you’re already past the point where you would have been if you were still putting it off.

Jay: Yeah, I think part of this though is to be decisive, but to be informed in your decisiveness.

If you don’t have good tracking of what’s going on, like, we were decisive before, and this is how we learned, and we tracked it, and so next time we can move faster because we have some knowledge, we have some key performance indicators, those things are going to help our decisions go faster, and we’re going to be more confident in those decisions.

Because for me, sometimes when I feel like we’ve acted too soon, I’m not at my best. I’m hesitant because I’m hoping it’s going to work, but I’m not sure that there’s anything backing it up.

David: Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I think you also sort of raised an interesting point, which is the difference between informed decisions and uninformed decisions, right? I don’t think decisiveness means just making up your mind without having all the facts.

I’m saying basically, if you’ve got all the facts and you’re failing to decide, that to me is indecisiveness. If you’ve got all the facts and then you ARE deciding, that to me is decisiveness.

But I completely agree with you. If you don’t have all the information then it’s too soon to make a decision. But in sales situations, a lot of times salespeople struggle because the people they’re talking with don’t have all the information.

They don’t want to take the time to even gather all the information and they decide “no” before they have enough information to even make that sort of decision.

That’s frustrating from a sales standpoint. So for us as salespeople, it’s incumbent on us to let them know, “Hey, listen, are you sure you want to make this decision based on the limited information you have?”

And if they do, then, maybe they’re not the ideal prospects for us.

Jay: Yeah, I do a lot of sales now. I’m the front man for our company and I’m learning all of these things, especially a lot of things I’ve learned from the podcast that we do. And a lot of times when a customer has said something to me, I hear something in my head, “you know, you really should do this now.”

And then I’m like, “Oh, do I want to chase the customer away? Is this the right moment?” You know, they say something to me and it’s a moment to say, “no, this is why our services deal with exactly what you’re saying,” and to be very decisive in my response. That’s going to make me look more confident and more knowledgeable to the potential client.

The other way around, if I’m hesitant, it’s like, “does this guy really know what he’s talking about?”

David: Yeah, exactly. And I think when we have a better idea of the facts than our client or a prospective client does, we owe it to them to say, “Hey, listen, here’s what I think you might be missing.”

Ultimately it’s going to be their decision anyway. But I do think that we have a responsibility to point out, “Hey, look, yeah, you can do this three months from now. You can do this six months from now. You can do this next year, but what’s happening in the meantime?”

And it’s particularly frustrating. I had a situation recently where I was talking to someone who is in a situation where they need to grow their sales.

They were lacking the money they needed to make a decision that they wanted to make, and they decided instead that they were going to spend their money on something that was not going to produce any ROI for them for the foreseeable future. They felt like they had to get their ducks in a row before they could make the decision to do the thing that would allow them to generate the money that would allow them to pay somebody else maybe to get their ducks in a row, you know what I mean?

It’s frustrating, but these conversations are necessary. And when we’re dealing with indecisive people, I don’t think the goal is to bully them or try to convince or cajole them into making a decision that is not in their best interest.

But if we can see clearly that it IS in their best interest, and we don’t convey that to them, we allow them to go do something that is very likely going to be detrimental to them, then that’s on us.

Jay: Yeah, and I think a lot of that comes down to believing in your product. If you really think your product is going to help them, then you can be decisive in what you tell them. You can honestly say, look, you really need to do this now because it’s going to help you get closer to your goals.

In my case, I can say, if you don’t do this now, you’re going to guarantee to lose money because I deal with taxes. And you’re close to guaranteeing you’re going to hear from Uncle Sam soon because of how you’re doing it.

I’m not hyping it up. I’m not lying. Those are absolute truths. And as you said, I am doing them a disservice if I don’t let them know those things. So in those things, I’m very decisive.

David: Yeah, and I think most of us in business try to make the best decisions possible, but really it becomes a matter of saying, okay, do I have all the information I need? And if I do, then make the decision. Say yes, say no, but make the decision.

There are some people who want to sleep on it and then they wake up the next morning and they had a good night’s sleep, but they’re nowhere closer to a decision because they haven’t actually said to myself, okay, I’m going to think about what I heard. I’m going to make the call and I’m going to announce it tomorrow. Right?

Because then everybody’s on the same page. I understand where you are. You understand where I am. If we’re moving forward, great. If we’re not moving forward, at least we both know it. There are a lot of indecisive people who can convince themselves that they’re going to do something in the near future or the not too distant future.

And they really had no chance of doing it because they’re just not set up to do it.

Jay: Yeah. And this is something I struggle with. They’re on the phone. I’ve got them excited. They’re telling them they need it. And they’re like, okay, when we get off the phone, I’ll sign up. And then I can’t tell you how many of those I’ve lost because I got them psyched up and the minute they got off the phone.

Let’s say they were a hundred at excitement. When they hang up the phone, they’re now at 95. A couple of hours pass, now they’re here. And then oftentimes they’re like, okay, I wonder if I can find a cheaper price. And it all comes from the fact that I couldn’t close them when they were at the highest point.

And the reason I couldn’t do that is I wasn’t decisive. I wasn’t confident to just say those words. And those words are the hardest to me, okay? Let’s get you signed up right now. Here’s how you do it. That’s the final step I’m still working on.

David: Yeah. And I think we don’t want to be in a position where we’re trying to push them. You have to do it now. You have to do it now.

Because the honest truth is they don’t have to do it now. But if it’s to their advantage to do it now, then they really should. Why put it off? Why put it off for a week or a month or a year, if they can start getting the benefits right away.

Jay: Yeah, absolutely. Any other things they can do to get over paralysis by analysis?

David: Well, some of it is just recognizing it, recognizing that, okay, I really just need to get more decisive about things. I need to practice, really.

If you’re struggling with decisiveness, make a pact with yourself, decide that you’re going to start making decisions.

So it could be something small. If you’re talking to your wife or your husband and you’re saying, where do you want to go for dinner tonight? And they don’t know, and you don’t know, and nobody knows. Pick a place, you know, just pick a place and say, okay, how about we go here, see what happens.

Jay: Yeah, except with your wife, you pick a place and then they’re like, No, not there, even though they told you let’s go anywhere.

David: Yeah, but at least you made a decision, even if it was overruled.

Jay: Yeah, here’s what we try and do, and this has been probably the most helpful for me. is fortunately we have a system that records calls.

So after calls, once a week, my partner goes in and he listens to these calls and he doesn’t listen to be critical. He listens to find better ways and he has listened and given me incredible feedback about how I do these calls.

So having somebody else who has knowledge of the company who, it could be a boss, it could be a co worker, maybe co workers listen to each other.

And if you can give constructive feedback to each other, I’ll tell you what, Dave, that has helped me out more than anything.

David: Yeah. And having the list of bullet points of the primary advantages to them doing it, the disadvantages to them not doing it, that’s going to go a long way as well.

Jay: Yeah. All right.

How do people find out more?

David: I’m starting to sound like Robert Kennedy Jr. on this. Sorry. My voice is a little fried.. Go to, schedule a call with our team, and let’s see what we can do to get you from here to there with the least amount of delay, the least amount of indecision, and the least amount of procrastination.

If it turns out that we end up working together, that’s awesome. If we don’t, that’s okay too, but at least we’ll both know.

Jay: All right. Fantastic. Thank you so much for your time today.

David: Thank you, Jay.

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