Understanding Our Need To Believe

Entrepreneurs know pressure. Our intense desire to reduce pressures can impact our desire to believe in someone or something. We want to believe that our customer, employee, vendor or investor sitting in front of us wants to do business with us or is right for our business. You’re evaluating a consultant who seems to have a lot of experience and isn’t that expensive. She can also start right away. Our first thought is, “Wow, someone who we can afford and who is available?” Do you ask yourself, “If she is good, why is she cheap and why is she not already working?” Of course not. We want to believe.

Needs can cloud your judgment.” 

See What You Need to See

For entrepreneurs, the early stages of building a business are particularly challenging, simply because you lack resources, established customers, relationships, capital and employees. But in the end, your perspective is everything: you can choose to ignore harmful deficits and continue to “want to believe.” To believe that the employee is right. To believe that the vendor will perform. To believe that the investor will fund. Or you can acknowledge this ineffectual perspective and turn the temptation to look the other way into a chance to involve your entire team in better decision-making. You want to believe. The sooner you realize this about yourself, the sooner you can address this natural tendency and turn a frustration into a win.

Entrepreneurs with this flawed perspective let the pressure, passion, pleasure and pain overcome their judgment and regrettably ignore the facts in front of them. Two examples for you:

  • Employees. You interview a prospective employee who has never worked in your industry. You convince yourself that if the individual knows his functional area, you can teach them the industry, even if the industry is nuclear physics.
  • Investors. Or you meet with potential investors who have a track record of negotiating contracts that require an exit event in one to two years. You turn a blind eye to this risk, and convince your team that this will force you to be more focused and efficient than your original five-year plan.

There is nothing wrong with being excited, but don’t let your need or desire (or panic) about the necessity of something turn into clouding the details of what’s actually occurring.

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