How Decision Fatigue is Hurting Your Business

Making decisions cost you more than you know

How Decision Fatigue is Hurting Your Business

How Decision Fatigue is Hurting Your Business

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There was once a farmer that hired temporary day laborers to fix some things around his farm. However, the farmer was quickly impressed by this one special laborer. Each fix-it job that the farmer thought would keep that laborer busy for days, was done in only hours. He kept giving him more and more tasks only to hear the laborer come back shortly after saying, “All fixed.”

The farmer was so happy with both the speed and quality of this young man’s work, that he asked him one day to help with sorting potatoes.

He told the laborer, this job is far easier than standing in the hot sun and mending fences or pipes all day. All you have to do is sit in a chair down in this nice cool basement and sort potatoes into two piles…good or bad.

But in less than 2 hrs, the laborer comes back to the farmer with a frustrated, “I quit!”.

The farmer, stunned, says, “You can’t quit. You have been the best worker I have ever had here. I’ll double your pay”, says the farmer.

“No way! I’ve had it!”, says the laborer. “Fixing stuff is no problem, but this potato sorting thing is just decision after decision.”

Roy F. Baumeister, a social psychologist coined the term “decision fatigue” in reference to the decline in the quality of decisions that are made by a person after many decisions have been made in a row.

As business owners or managers, you are probably acutely aware of “decision fatigue” as you are bombarded with decisions throughout your day. But rarely do we consider the decisions our employees have to make in a day and how the quality of those decisions impact YOUR business.

Staffing and recruiting companies may be more vulnerable to decision fatigue than other industries. Each candidate that comes across their desktop represents a potential profit and increasing the chance you are deciding on good candidates can increase your bottom line.

Compound the importance of deciding on good candidates with all the other decisions that recruiter has to make in a day, and more importantly the timing of those decisions, you may see lots of areas for possible improvement.

Who to call next? What to do next? Is this candidate a good fit? Every single decision is spending valuable energy.

The more you can organize and preplan for your staff, you will ensure that valuable energy is spent where it counts. Deciding on the best candidates.

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