Ted’s Rule #2: Don’t lie and don’t commit until you have to

Don’t lie and don’t commit until you have to.

As a business owner/CEO, it is inevitable that you will find yourself in situations where you are tempted to stretch the truth or even lie. If a vendor asks you how soon you’ll have his check, you don’t necessarily need to tell him that you barely made payroll last week.  Don’t panic and say, “I’ll put it in the mail first thing in the morning.”  Instead, acknowledge that you owe him money and that he deserves to know when he can expect payment.  Tell him that you will be in touch as soon as you can give him reliable information.

The second half of this rule, “Don’t commit until you have to” is a corollary to the first.   Consider this:  we all want immediate answers to our questions; it’s basic human nature.  It follows that we all feel obligated to give immediate answers to questions asked of us.  Guess what?  You don’t have to.  Sometimes, in order to give the most accurate information, you may need to do a little more research.  Sometimes, in order to reduce the likelihood of “changing your answer” three more times, you need to delay giving an answer.  Sometimes, having a little more wiggle room on the time line can make a big difference to your business.  The point here is:  consciously decide how much information, which information and at what time that information is best shared with which individuals or groups.  When you are asked a question, don’t automatically answer; pause and consider your response.

JRI Consulting, LLC