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Indecision Can Prove Problematic in HR

When you are dealing with people, very few decisions are clear cut. This can often result in delays and prevarication.

From a recruitment perspective, the moment that hesitation enters the mix, happy endings are that little bit harder to achieve. A candidate might be keen as mustard after the first interview, but if the process is convoluted, only the most devoted candidate will retain their initial enthusiasm. Equally, a client might not understand why a candidate wishes to assess all their options – if they are hesitating, that must mean that they are not so engaged.

When someone is indecisive in any sphere of corporate life, the first instinct is to wonder what they are waiting for. Observers often try to second guess what might be causing the blockage, but it is rare that they hit the nail fully on the head. The reasons for not being able to take a certain step are often complicated, and sometimes deeply personal, so it is my experience that the most suitable initial reaction is that of patience.

You might want them to take action now, but you have to give them the benefit of the doubt that they will make it happen when they are ready. This is easy to say, but far less easy to do.

We are dependant on the actions of others like never before. When our lives are impacted by the indecision of others, it is an all too natural reaction to feel indignant and wonder why they are being so selfish. You can’t make up their minds for them, but the temptation to give them a “chase” is often too great. Before you know it, you are nagging, harassing and cajoling everyone around you. That is a recipe for stress, and it will probably make you pretty unpopular as well. I believe that there has to be another answer.

We simply have to realign our expectations.

Let’s assume that we are all working with the best will in the world towards making the best decisions for ourselves and for each other. If someone is not ready to make a decision, then you have to assume that they think it is in their best interests to wait. If we assume that our interests are generally aligned, then presumably it is in our best interests to let them make up their minds when they are ready?

In our “time is money” world, adopting such an attitude is far from easy.

As with everything, the key is to find a balance that works for everyone. I feel that giving people the time and space to make decisions is a healthy attitude, but you have to be clear about how much time and space they have. A world without boundaries invites chaos, but a world with tight boundaries ensures missed opportunities.

You might not have made up your mind yet, but as long as you are working towards doing it soon, that’s okay with me.

How does indecision affect your business?

How do you feel waiting for a candidate, who isn’t quite ready yet?

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