Don't be afraid to make the call

First 100 Days

Running a business is really just a whole series of decisions you didn’t think you’d have to make, along with a few you would rather not have to at all. No matter what you’re doing you will have tough calls to make which affect people, product and profit.

The first big call you’ll make is starting the business in the first place. It’s your first make or break decision, and if you don’t make it your journey stops there. It's important to remember that decision, making it shows conviction and self belief. Your business outcomes will all hinge on the decisions you make, and to me, why and the way you make your decisions (and that you make them) is more important than the outcome itself.

  • Back yourself

Especially in the early days of your business you're likely to be the one making pretty much all of the decisions. It's important the options you choose are ones you believe in and are committed to, you’ll be the one living and breathing them.

It can be tough to take a determined line when you’re unsure of your heading. The decision you make though needs to be clear, any questioning needs to be resolved before a direction is taken. The reason you are running your business, making the decisions, is you have something to offer. It is important to remember that and use that to guide you when you need the confidence to make a call.

Back yourself in - that's part of what makes you an entrepreneur!

  • Process or Instinct

To me, there are two processes entrepreneurs use to make decisions, process and instinct. Different people will reach their decisions in different ways, sometimes the process will depend on the situation.

Process based decision makers will deconstruct an issue, analyse it and the expected outcomes before they take any action. It's usually a well thought out and measured approach. Process decision makers are the kinds who will normally have hard evidence or numbers to back up their calls.

Instinctive decision makers are the ones who make their call based on what they feel is the right way to go. They aren't making calls based on nothing, they draw on their experience and understanding of people, the business and the market to guide them. These decisions will often be more "bold" than process ones.

Instinctive decisions will probably be made more quickly than process decisions, simply for the fact there isn't as much research or analysis. The risk with them lies in the strength of the decision maker to back themself - doing things by halves can be the result if there is a lack of confidence.

I don't see there being a right or wrong - it can depend on the individual, the situation, the desired outcome or the combination of factors. I think it is vital the decision maker is aware of the way they make their decision though. If not, their response to things not going to plan may be out, or they just may not learn for the next time.

Whichever process you use, have faith in it, know the outcome you're aiming for and take things there the best way you think you can. Don't be afraid to disagree, or have others disagree with you, and ALWAYS pick something. The more you procrastinate and fail to act, the less you stand to achieve. We're often told we should "fail fast and fail often", whether you believe in that or not, you need to make a decision before anything can happen.

Andrew Snell

Director at

Andrew brings a range of skills and experience not often found together. Working simultaneously across different industries and disciplines he has a unique view of the business landscape. He has high level experience in marketing and public relations strategy and delivery, live production and technical management and design and has worked in and with many high profile SMEs. Andrew founded and runs Coaster Group and is a keen, serial entrepreneur - making ideas real is his passion.