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  • Writer's pictureBob Prentice


Updated: Apr 9, 2020

When I was a farm kid some 45 odd years ago I made some pretty bad decisions. As I reflect back to those days, I was reminded of this great story recently, that I'd like to share with you today.

A farm boy accidentally overturned his wagonload of corn. The farmer who lived nearby heard the noise and rushed right over. "Hey Willis!!" the farmer yelled. "Forget it for now. It's dinnertime. Come eat with us, and then we'll come back and I will help you turn the wagon back up."

"That's mighty nice of you, " Willis answered, "but I don't think Pa would like me to."

"Aw, come on," the farmer insisted, "you have to eat! We'll get back to the wagon soon." "Well okay," the boy finally agreed, and added, "But Pa won't like it." After a hearty dinner, Willis thanked his host. "I feel a lot better now, but I know Pa is going to be real upset." "Don't be foolish." the neighbor said with a smile. "By the way, where is your Pa?" "Under the wagon."

Wow! The farmer thought he knew and understood the situation, but obviously he didn't! He was missing one very important piece of information which would have changed everything! At our place one phrase that is heard quite often is: New information causes change!

These days in the age of the internet social media, and smart phones, new information is coming to us constantly, often at blazing speeds. We are making our decisions quicker than ever. I am not sure if we are better off for it. Making quicker decisions may mean we are making fewer good decisions; less well-thought-out decisions. The results may not always be what we had hoped for.

When it comes to decision making, my best advice is to slow down and get all the facts. Do not be in such a rush. Make the phone call, ask the questions, listen and capture the answers. Yes, it requires more time now, however much better than 10 times more wasted time down the road due to poor decision making. It's only taken me a lifetime of problems and challenges to figure this out. But I'm learning!

I love teaching and training about leadership, so if you're looking for a keynote speaker for your organization's conference, or a trainer for you next leadership development training, or staff meeting, let's talk! Feel free to check out my Keys To Better Leadership page to learn about the many topics I can speak on pertaining to leadership.

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