We live in an age where there is an oversupply of choices and options.
I remembered, I was two or three, when we only had 2 channels in our black and white television set which was given away by a generous relative. Those days when only a few people in the community can afford to own a set, the whole community will gather to watch whatever show it had on. It was fun, having all your neighbors in one room, all glued to the tube. Those were the days.
Now, we have hundreds of channels to choose from cable and over the video streaming, there are hundreds of shows to watch. There are also pay-per-view channels to choose from and of course, the extinct DVD/CD watching, which became a staple in 90s and early 2000s.
How is this oversupply of choices make for decision-making?
We become paralyzed, unable to make the right choice.
We have to conduct research to suit our 'unique' situation and preferences, and most of the time, postpone making a decision.
When the need to become more informed is a prerequisite, it has become too much of a burden to even do it.
Most of the time, we listen and rely on the most popular feedback or comment about the product or service from friends and people we trust.
This has not changed although, there are more creative and insidious ways than ever before to promote and spread buzz around. There is a store in our area that says 'closing sale' for few consecutive years now. They haven't closed ever.
This paralysis analysis over products and services will continue because we will have more choices for some things and less for some things in the future. That distinction is something that we need to grapple on.
At the microcosm of the decision-making, here are some ways to stamp out the paralysis analysis:
1. Know the 'musts' and be open to 'preferences.'
There are certain things you can't live without and there are certain things your spouse/children or relatives or friends would prefer more than you do. You can live with the latter.
2. Know the real need it is trying to resolve.
The seller will sell you all kinds of features but is it actually resolving the need, replacing the old, and giving you a new framework to live with?
3. Investigate but keep an open mind.
There are tons of fake news and comments about products and services. 1/2 of the people will say it is good and half will say don't even go there. But it is up to you to you know what you don't know and try it before you can make an honest judgement.
How are you dealing with too many choices and considerations? Share your thoughts here.
There are many approaches and methods that one can use to deal with a management issue. Not all of them, though can get you directly to the solution.
Some are too cumbersome, you don't even want to embark on the program. Even for the personal empowerment solutions, you wonder if the nine steps towards debt-free lifestyle can make you even broke!
That nine steps or twelve stages will not get you closer to your destination unless you break it down and only use what is pragmatic for your situation.
Blindly following the prescribed actions without considering if it is appropriate, value-adding, and practically easy to execute is wasting precious time and effort.
Do the needful-get a big cauldron and mix them all.
1. What gets traction, has long-term promise & viability, and resonates well with the culture and direction of your organization?
2. Aside from costs, what time commitment and effort are involved?
3. Who is championing this and will ensure that things get done properly?
If you find it difficult answering these questions, then you have yet to learn about the proposed solution and get your head down to work.
Look for evergreen principles and eschew the fads and newer models.
In five years, these will fade and you will be surprised Drucker's ideas are as relevant as fifty years ago!
Executives trying to make a difference in their roles, making an important decision, or improving their organization should always ask: So what?
Data is easily generated these days. Sometimes, it takes the place of Strategy, instead of using judgements to create a singularity of purpose. When this happens, data will fail in pointing you to the right direction. Humans interpret data, not the other way around.
Creating a calm above the data noise is very important. Asking so-what questions eliminates the overdependence on data and trends, focuses the attention on the long-term objectives, and frees up the mind to think beyond the here-and-now, short-term gains.
Do you ask a lot of so-what questions, lately?
A few things about me:
I am not a best-selling author.
Having this label means one day you are the top of the heap. That being said, you can say that you a 'best-selling' author.
I didn't do TEDx.
TEDx self-selects those that will be in front of the audience.
I am not in a millionaire/billionaire league.
This is the worst league to be in when you don't have a message just the monies to throw around.
I am not a PhD.
Having a PhD doesn't make you successful, smart, and happy.
I am not covered by Fast Company, New Times Journal, Time Magazine, etc.
Being covered by those media companies is great but it is more an icing to the cake.
I am not voted 43 out of 45.
Who gets to do that? Those people that are looking for more subscriptions.
I am not in the whos' who list.
You pay your way in there.
I am not in the Speakers bureau.
You have to audition and they get a cut out of your hard-earned work.
I am not in the YouTube, Facebook, or Twitter ad.
Trolling in those media is not what by clients do.
I am not a podcaster, TV or media host sensation.
Buying your way into this business is a sure sign you are in deep trouble.
I didn't speak with Deepak Chopra, Tim Robbins, or Michelle Obama on stage.
Having shared a stage with these personalities does not make you effective, relevant, and truly amazing.
Who has this profile? Thousands of people claiming to be a celebrity expert, author, blogger, marketer, consultant, etc.
But who am I?
I help organizations and individuals achieve organizational excellence.
I mentor many people from different parts of the world.
I am a community collaborator and builder.
I navigate many spaces and interesting networks that I enjoy learning from and giving value.
I have a lot of friends in many industries and sectors.
I am a global person with deep roots in communities.
I love to travel and enjoy cultural and psychological aspect of it.
I believe that you can make it anywhere.
Genes and your upbringing contribute to your resilience and grit.
I love my family, neighbors, friends and church.
I love to share my insights, lessons, and knowledge to those that are ready to hear.
I believe in the honest-to-goodness decency and goodness of people.
I believe in values, virtues, and principles to live by.
Being real is not hiding behind these labels and approval sheets that can be manufactured overnight. Being real is knowing that you can make a difference in real-world and in real-time to real people.
So tell me, who has the real worth, the fabricated sense of self or the real self?
Remember, the film 'Dead Poets Society', where the teacher played by Robin Williams told the students to stand on their desks and ask them what they can see. This is where the famous line was quoted, Carpe Diem.
What do you see when things are upside down? Can you create something out of the vantage point?
I bet you can.
There is too much going on in pop culture, social media, and business schools that you can be like Elon Musk, Warren Buffet, Mark Cuban by knowing how they go about their days, eat the kind of food they eat, mediate the same way, read the same books they read – all for the sake to be like them- millionaires /billionaires. This is utter nonsense.
Copying other’s people success is the biggest billion-dollar scam to hit the millennium. You can never be like Elon (there was one interview where the lady interviewer asked Elon “how to be like him?” which was pretty dumb and patronizing) or Mark or Bill Gates for that matter. They are as unique as their genetic makeup, upbringing, social network, educational attainment or non-attainment, life paths, and their predilection for high risk, high ambition, and high rewards.
People who wanted to be a millionaire/billionaire or become wildly successful in business, career, or life has to ask two fundamental questions:
1) Do you have what it takes to succeed in your game? Do you have the innate confidence, talent, determination, and ruthlessness in your pursuit of excellence, health, business domination, and other lofty goals?
2) Do you have the energy, vitality, and open-mindedness to innovate, recharge, retool, and continuously learn and evolve in what you are doing all the time?
If you answered yes to the two questions, you are 20% above the rest of the world population in getting what you want in life and your pursuits. Mastery of yourself and mastery of your environment will take you to places you have never imagined because the first wall that limits you are the walls that you build in your mind.
You cannot copy somebody’s life or life choices. And even if you copy them, you will never be like the people that you want to copy. You can achieve the heights of their success only if you follow your song and dance to your beat and create opportunities for yourself and others in the process.
Success doesn’t come by chance but continuing the path where you can become great or do something great and create value for many people is the best bet of all.
Success doesn't come from some neat formula somewhere, people trying to get to third base when there capacity, attitude, and mental stamina remain in the first base. There are principles that are evergreen to guide one's path but it is up to the individual person to become that master of himself and his environment.
The cavemen did not know who were the people inside the caves that they see. Only when a sunlight penetrated the cave that they found out that it was their shadows playing tricks on them.