Your Way, My Way, The Better Way

“If we have data, let’s look at data. If all we have are opinions, we’ll use mine,” Jim Barksdale, former Netscape CEO.

Short and sweet. Efficient. Practical. Not necessarily right for the organization.

Leaders have opinions and trust their instincts, especially in the absence of data. It’s easy to get in the habit of relying on opinions — notably our own. Digging deep for objective criteria takes more time and effort.

The best leaders are committed to data-based decisions:

  • It keeps them grounded in reality vs the chaos of conflicting opinions
  • Using data enhances trust, because employees respect objectivity
  • They understand that their perception of reality is not objective (“We see the world not as it is, but as we are,” Stephen Covey)

Relying on facts reduces drama, increases clarity, and drives better results. It’s the harder way, but it’s the better way.

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