This is the 33rd of a series of newsletters published on Business Management and Management Skills. Not all topics will apply to your business, but each section will be beneficial to establish company goals and objectives. By reading and studying these newsletter articles, you’re taking the first step in achieving your goals.

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Much of the work of management is done between the ears. Economic conditions must be considered, markets must be investigated, and strategies established. Finances must be set in order. Employee conflicts and frictions must be resolved. To be successful, all of these actions must be preceded by ordered thought.

In all cases, alternatives must be evaluated and a decision must be made. Then, a plan of action must be developed and put in place. Don’t close your mind to a single point of view. Listen to others, and determine the proper course of action. Emotions, moods and snap judgments are apt to influence you, but final decisions must be based on clear, careful review of the situation and correct evaluation of the conditions, tempered by special circumstances, timing and priorities. Yes, it is a complex and difficult undertaking!

Many times it will be necessary and advantageous for you to “think on your feet”; that is, make a decision in an instant that could impact your company, other individuals, etc. Developing self-confidence in your ability to think a problem through comes from experience and preparation. Confidence is built using many small parts, such as reading, continuing education, and taking control over your emotions. The foundation of confidence is past success and knowing your own limits. It’s difficult to kill a business by trying to make good decisions.

Thinking Out Loud. People hearing you think out loud won’t know whether you are expressing an alternative, a random thought, or making a final decision. As a result, they may take action on something you said without realizing it, and it may be a thought you later discarded. Be careful when indulging in this kind of thought process to let any nearby listeners know the status of the statements you make. Remember - he who is in control of his tongue possesses great wisdom!

Mike Holt’s Comment: I would like to extend a special thank you to L.W. Brittian, a Mechanical & Electrical Instructor in Lott, Texas, for reviewing and editing the various articles in these newsletters. His comments and suggestions have been invaluable in the preparation of my Business Management and Management Skills’ Workbook. This newsletter article was extracted from that workbook. Watch for our next newsletter, and as always, we invite your comments and feedback. Send us your real-life experiences. We value your opinions and participation. Please respond to And… be sure to visit Mike Holt’s Website at

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