Stick to your guns. Stay the course. Tow the line. These are all phrases we’ve said or that others have said encouraging us to persevere in doing what we know is right or best to do. It’s a simple concept, but not easy to do.
When we’ve done our research, gathered input, and know that we have the right solution as a leader, whether at work or at home, we set direction. Many times, almost immediately after setting direction, we may start second-guessing ourselves, or we may meet with resistance. If we aren’t totally sure of ourselves or if we have a tendency to be a people pleaser, we might back off or even retreat. On the other hand, if we don’t care what others think, we might run over the people we love or those we need to accomplish the task or goal.
As leaders, we need to act with conviction and persist in face of opposition when we know in our heart and mind that the decision we are making is good for everyone involved, even if they can’t see it at the time. As leaders, it is our duty to cast the vision and help people to move towards that vision in everything they do. If we don’t, confusion arises and business or relationships suffer.
To keep things in perspective and to give yourself confidence in sticking to your guns, ask yourselves these questions:
- Does the decision/direction have a sound basis? (Have you done your research?)
- Have you weighed the pro and cons, leading to your decision to proceed?
- Have you opened yourself up to perspectives different from your own?
- Have you sought advice from others who don’t have a vested interest in the outcome of the decision?
- Have you fully vetted the options with those who will be impacted by the decision?
- Does your gut or intuition align with your assessment?
While it may not be possible to answer all of these questions with a yes, the more that you can, the higher confidence and stronger conviction you will have, allowing you to persevere even in the face of opposition. It still won’t be easy, but it is likely to be easier.