A decision isn’t a decision if it’s only in your head

Silhouette of woman standing in sunset

If you are like most of us and have a loud and busy voice in your head, you’ll be familiar with this scenario.

You know that feeling, when you’re sure you’ve already had this conversation? Or the quizzical expression that washes over your face when someone is broaching a topic you think has already been dealt with? Or that you’re going along thinking everything is clear and understood but people around you seem confused and unclear about what they’re doing?

These are all symptoms of having a meeting with yourself, coming to a conclusion you’ve both agreed with and then put that into action. The trouble with this strategy is that no one else really knows that it has happened.

A decision isn’t a decision until it is communicated… clearly.

I wanted to write about this because I have the pleasure and privilege to work with some heavy duty thinkers and doers. They have brains the size of planets and can hold many pieces of context, knowledge and memories all in the one place. These wonderful humans also have the tendency to make decisions after communing with their mind planets, perhaps even without realising, and then wonder why there is confusion around them. These incredible people are often leaders.

We are really good at communicating the important stuff, the big stuff. Strategic intentions, market shifts, significant personal changes and so on. What we are not so good at is communicating the minutia. And I’m not advocating for constant self reporting, “I’ve decided to take this call, I’m sitting down, I’m reaching for my pen”. I’m talking about the important smaller decisions that actually make things hum.

I’d love to give you an example we are experiencing right now, but the people involved read this blog and without their permission I’m reluctant to do so. If they didn’t read this blog… I’m kidding. So instead I will say this, when you make a decision be sure to tell people about it. A touch of Captain Obvious there I know, I still believe it’s worth saying.

If there is confusion around you about something that is clear in your mind, take it as a signal that you’ve forgotten to communicate something you’ve decided.

If you’re here to have any type of impact on our current reality, those you collaborate with need to be clear about what they are here to do and what unique role they play in making that happen. Over communication is not such a bad thing.