The Executive's Guide to Limiting Decision Fatigue

Ever notice that you’re tired at the end of the day even though you may not have actually done any physical work? Perhaps you haven’t done any of the knowledgework, either - yet you’re taxed.

If you’re like any other owner-executive, it’s likely that the fatigue you feel is decision fatigue. It’s exactly as it sounds: you’re tired because you’ve had to make decisions all day and decision-making is a taxing endeavor. Decision fatigue does more than tax us, though. It also makes us irritable, frustrated, and can be a contributing factor to generally poorer decision-making.

Part of the reason many owner-executives get decision fatigue is because we’ve confused us being the chief decision-maker with us being the only decision-maker. If you’re not in a solo biz, you shouldn’t be the only one making decisions.

Another reason we get decision fatigue is because our vision, strategy, and purpose aren’t clear and we have to make a slew of micro-decisions every day. A solid vision and strategy necessarily excludes a lot of options, with the upshot being that you don’t have to spend all day making decisions - you’ve already made the most important ones.

Yet another common reason we have decision fatigue is because the people we do have helping us aren’t fully empowered and as sufficient as they should be. In the majority of cases, that’s not their fault - it’s their supervisor’s. As employers and supervisors, we are responsible for the training and environment our teammates work in.

Delegating decision-making. Getting clear on our vision, strategy, and purpose. Training and providing an effective work environment.

Three simple areas to invest in that both limit decision fatigue and set the conditions for successful business growth. And while simple≠easy, ask yourself whether you’d rather be fatigued by the effort of solving the problem or fatigued because the problem remains unsolved.

It’s your decision. :p

Photo Credit: tm-tm

About Charlie Gilkey

Charlie Gilkey is the go-to guy for changemakers, entrepreneurs, and small business owners for figuring out how to get the right things done. His blog, Productive Flourishing, is one of the top productivity and business blogs on the web. His forthcoming book, Beyond Bootstrapping, helps entrepreneurs and small business owners become better executives and build better businesses from the business they’ve already built.