Tips on Gathering Perspectives as a Business Owner

by / Friday, 30 May 2014 / Published in Small Business Advice

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A single perspective can be enough to make a correct decision, but when it comes to a more difficult or nuanced question, it can be in a business owner’s best interest to approach the problem from multiple angles. Whether you are weighing an employee perk program or considering investing in new equipment under a constrained cash flow, reflection and a bit of time can go a long way. Here are some ideas on creating more perspective on a problem for yourself.

Research historical answers to your problem. Historical answers doesn’t necessarily mean ancient history (although you can get some great perspective from that as well). What this concept refers to is a more immediate history that is available thanks to the internet, where almost any problem you can think of has been experienced and written about by someone. The perspective of a problem that you already have can and should be supplemented by the perspective of others. In many cases, a business problem may be sensitive in nature, so researching for yourself how others have dealt with it will cut out the need to share the problem with someone close to you. That said, if possible you should speak to another person you trust to get their opinion on the matter, provided that they are qualified to give you sound advice. The more influencers you have, the more viewpoints you can cultivate in the interest of finding the strongest solutions.

Approach the problem on paper. The key to gaining multiple perspectives on problems is taking them and framing them in your mind differently. When you put something on paper you are approaching it visually as opposed to purely mentally. In many cases, this is all that you need to connect two aspects of the issue that you were formerly keeping in separate mental boxes.

Sleep on it. Time will offer you a broader perspective, so if possible, giving yourself time for reflection in weighty matters is a good idea. While it is often the case that an instinctual conclusion will be spot on, the time that you spend sleeping is the time that your brain uses to mend, organize thoughts and create memories. While you are asleep, you may in fact be figuring things out for yourself, waking up with a new and insightful connection.

Photo Credit to Christiaan Triebert on Flickr

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