Choosing the best way forward

A sea chart showing various alternative routes

Once we have identified the ten types of opportunity that might be facing us, we then need to choose between them.

Peter Drucker had very a clear view about the best way to do this.

Drucker was an author and consultant whose thinking shaped the modern corporation. 

He said:

“Doing the right things is more important than doing things right.”

In other words, when you are choosing a way forward it is better to choose a difficult path towards the outcomes you want rather than an easy path towards the wrong results — it is better to move slowly in the right direction than quickly in the wrong one.

It is better to do the right things badly than to do the wrong things well.

This probably seem obvious. But how many times do we go along with what is easy instead of doing what is important? How many times do we go with the flow instead of making a deliberate choice to do what really matters to us?

If the winds are blowing in the direction you want to travel, then your decision is easy: you sail downwind. And when the wind is blowing against you, this means it is better to tack and jibe across that wind, moving forward slowly towards the destination you have chosen, rather than simply going to where the wind is blowing today.

Choosing the best way forward is not only about knowing how to find more opportunities — it’s also about having the clarity and courage to choose the way forward that is best for you, even if it seems difficult.

In your work, or in your life, are you going where the wind blows or are you deliberately moving towards a destination that matters to you?

Adapted from Inner Leadership: a framework and tools for building inspiration in times of change.

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Photo By Dale Simonson via

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