Chubby Rules      

The Worst Decision I Ever Made

Life lessons from Chubby (my dad) and other smart folks I’ve met on the road.

Chubby was perturbed. Restless, cranky it seemed.

“Dad,” I said, “What’s wrong?”

I made a terrible decision, he said.

A sales agent named Joyce just left our firm. She took several agents with her, customers too. It’s going to cost me a lot.”

Chubby Rules Decision
I’m sorry,” I said. “Can I do anything?

Yes” Chubby responded. “Don’t make the same mistake.”

What mistake? I replied.

I didn’t.” Dad answered.

Didn’t what? I asked.

Greg,” Dad said. “I knew Joyce was a troublemaker. Late for sales meetings. Complained incessantly. Criticized the company. I should have fired her a long time ago.”

Why didn’t you?” I asked.

“I violated my own rule.” Chubby answered. “I didn’t decide.”

I could see that Dad was angrier with himself than with Joyce.

Years ago when I started the company,” Dad said.

I decided that the worst decisions I’d make would be not to decide. That’s what I did with Joyce. I kept putting it off, hoping she’d change but knowing she wouldn’t.

I’m sorry.” I said. And I was. I felt bad for Dad.

Chubby Rules DecisionGreg,” Chubby instructed, “With every decision, there are only four options:

  1. Decide “yes.”
  2. Decide “no.”
  3. Decide it’s best to delay.
  4. Don’t decide.

Don’t confuse #3 with #4. It’s a critical mistake. That’s what I did with Joyce.

I didn’t decide it was best to delay. I knew better. Every day she was hurting the firm. I put it off . . .  I pulled a #4 wimp-out. And that, Greg, was the worst decision of all.”

The lesson I learned from Chubby that day?

Don’t pull #4 wimp-outs. 
The worst decisions are those you don’t make.

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