Past Indecision & Procrastination – Getting Boards and Committees to Move
Tomes have been written about the reasons we procrastinate or simply can’t make up our minds. In the club world, indecision is 1) rampant and 2) potentially costly, as necessary improvements aren’t made and the inability or lack of willingness to think ahead make for short-term projects that lead to long-term headaches. We’ve borrowed from those basics – procrastination and indecision – then honed in on the club-specific reasons behind the hold-ups. Does your member leadership fall prey to any of these?
- Fear of making a mistake. In the club environment, this fear is heightened because fellow members are friends — and no one wants to upset their friends. What if we make the wrong decision? We’ve seen barons of industry fall victim in this environment. In the end, decisions can’t be driven by an agenda, however noble in intent. They must be driven by a goal.
- Insufficient preparation. Goals are best established and a best-case approach mapped with proper data and knowledge as support. Best practices, competitor information, member preferences, operational analysis — thorough information can make decision-making easy, as the research tells the story and establishes the need.
- Controversy. Truth is, clubs are havens of Type A personalities — smart, strong, successful. And opinionated. And there will be many opinions on virtually any pending decision. Again, let the analysis make the case for change.
- The needed course of action may be unpopular. No one wants to pony up more money for something as unglamorous as new HVAC. Education, early member involvement and constant communication during master planning processes can often pave the way for member buy-in on even the most challenging of subjects.
- Too many options, too many (past) bad decisions. Often when Chambers comes into the planning process, we find Boards burned and burnt out on the relative failure of past projects. “How did we get in this mess?” they wonder. Good ideas without the benefit of a long-term vision often backfire over the long haul. It’s best to look at options in the context of a big picture vision for the club.
Our Type A members will make multimillion-dollar decisions for their companies any day of the week. Then why is it so hard to get them to move on behalf of your club? Because it’s personal. That acknowledgement is the first step in coaxing your Board and members through the hard choices.
What are your experiences with indecision and how have you overcome them?