An insight into decision making for the SME owner/manager

Noella Carroll Managing Director Pinnaklo Ltd 


An interesting discussion this morning with a colleague which I thought I would share…

How do I get to the next stage with my company? I have my long-term vision – I can clearly see what I want it to be but I don’t know how to get from here to there…. This is more common a concern for business owners that you might think… guaranteed there are many thinking the same thing today as you are…. There is no straight answer to this question, because there are many dependencies

1.      How risk adverse are you?

2.      What capacity for failure can you accept & am I prepared for success?

3.      When is the right time to make my next move?

4.      What is my next move?


Taking each one let’s talk it through

How Risk adverse are you? We as people are all different, the circumstances and family that surrounds us, the market your business is operating in, where you are in your business journey and indeed your life journey. You need to be honest with yourself on what you can take a risk on and what you cannot, if it seems too big a risk for you, pull it back to a smaller step, something you can take and allow yourself to sleep at night, Rome wasn’t built in a day!

What capacity for failure can you accept & am I prepared for success? You might think this is risk adversity, yes, it is but more so it isn’t, what matters here is what impacts are there to your decision – who/what will be impacted. For example, if you are bread winner in your family and your day to day income pays the mortgage and puts food on the table, this needs to be right up there as the biggest impact of your decision. If you have loyal employees who have stood by you for many years will they be impacted? Can you accept failure if it impacts them? If the opposite happens and you grow exponentially overnight will they support you? How will you keep them engaged? Perhaps your next move needs to be deferred to a time the impacts will be lower?

When is the right time to make my next move? Time and Plan go together… what is the plan, what are the steps to get to you the vision you see, if you don’t know what the steps are ring a mentor, a friend in business and ask for help. Define this so that you can see clearly that each of your steps are getting you to the end goal. Once you know this the timing will become clear

What is my next move? This is deliberately the last consideration I chose to outline, the reason being is that the next move at this point you already know, once you have defined your planned steps, you have considered your capacity for success or failure and your risk adversity.