Decision making may be one of the most important aspects of an EP professionals’ job. It is one of the most valued skills and can really set you apart. To really succeed in this industry you must have the ability to make decisions on the fly and use sound judgment when doing so. This doesn’t mean you have to make the “right” decision, but you have to make A decision (and it better be the right one). Don’t second guess yourself, if you make a decision…stick to it. If it is the wrong decision fix it and move on, don’t dwell and don’t apologize profusely…just don’t let it happen again. When you’re asked a question, have an answer ready, don’t backpedal and don’t give multiple options. Often times principals just want someone to make a decision for them. Whether you’re giving a briefing after an advance or you are asked which airport to go to…make a decision and stick to it. Don’t get me wrong, you shouldn’t just fire off an uneducated and uninformed decision but if you’re in a position to make these decisions you should be pretty informed. Anticipate what questions you may be asked, or what decisions you may need to make and know the answer, or research in advance. After you get some details and years under your belt it should happen as second nature. There’s the saying: “You’re only as good as your last detail.” When in fact you are only as good as your last decision.
Don’t second guess yourself: Career
Whether you have multi-million-dollar contracts or you’re new to the game, don’t second guess yourself. Too often the stress of life and this job can make you think twice about the decisions you are making about your career. Don’t throw in the towel when things get rough and don’t get discouraged when you see the “successful” ones out there boasting about a gig. There’s a reason you get the contracts and jobs that you have had, there is a reason you keep getting referred to new jobs, and most of all there’s a reason you chose to get into this field, remember this. There are a lot of aspects of this job that can put you down and the grind to excel in this field is relentless. Sometimes a detail doesn’t go as planned but you have to move on to the next one and take what you can from the previous. Often, we are more critical of ourselves than other people are of us, or the work we do. If the stress of the job wasn’t enough weight on your shoulders, the added stress of life can make you crumble. Sometimes it seems as though everyone in your workplace and your personal life want to bring you down or hold you back. The people around you can actually make it feel easy to give up, and we’ve all been there. Don’t second guess yourself and keep charging forward, if you get knocked off the horse get back on.
Don’t second guess yourself: That gut feeling
For many of us, it can be second nature to have a sixth sense. That gut feeling is usually spot on. It may sound cheesy but if you feel something say something…or at least act on it. If something feels off or out of place it probably is. In a career where are there are an endless amount of “what ifs”, we must plan and accept that the gut is the best gauge and is a key tool for us to use in those moments. It might be the energy in the room, someone that looks out of place, or something just doesn’t feel right. If your gut says something, listen. It doesn’t have to be a dramatic exit or an extreme response. Sometimes a simple adjustment to a vantage point or the repositioning of your principals’ chair can appease this sense and potentially prevent an issue or volatile situation. Don’t second guess that gut feeling, it’s the reason you are successful at what you do.
– Mike Smith