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Handling tough calls

Achieving success invariably means there will be times when you will have to make some big decisions – and they’re never easy. As a leader, it’s vital that you are prepared for these tough calls, and carefully consider their outcome, as they can have a dramatic impact on the life of others, and your chances of achieving your goals.

You may have to make a person redundant or reprimand an individual for poor performance. In such cases, the temptation could be to avoid making those tough choices, therefore cutting the risk of being disliked by colleagues, team members and your peer group. Unfortunately, these are decisions that have to be made in order for you to realise

your vision, and in some cases avoiding them can actually derail your ambitions. This means that if you have a group of people behind you, supporting your aim, they will also be disadvantaged by you not facing up to your responsibilities. There’s the chance that shying away from a big decision could leave you looking weak, which can undermine your authority as a leader.

The key is to always confront challenging situations and deal with them in a professional way so that you gain respect from those around you. This involves being open and honest about the decisions you have to make, making sure that everyone’s clear about the reasons behind your choice. If this involves one or more individuals, then it’s vital to treat them – and be seen to be treating them – fairly and to follow the correct protocol. By doing this, you will at least gain respect – even perhaps from those who may not agree with your decision – and you’ll be seen as a strong leader who is courageous enough to face up to their responsibilities for the sake of their team.

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