How Decision Making Evolves as a Startup Grows


As start-ups scale up, the decision-making process needs to evolve.

During the starting-up phase, the essence of decision-making is: less thinking and more hustling. So, you will need to focus on being fast, experimental, and flexible towards changes/pivots.

But, as you scale up, the essence of decision-making becomes: making the right judgment calls. So, you will need to be more right than fast, more committed towards the choices you make, and more patient as the results of those choices unfold.

The HBR article below adds more color to the above insight.

Now, if the above insight is correct, then what could be some common pitfalls? Well, see below:

  1. During the starting-up phase: Overthinking, Committing prematurely, Failing to pivot
  2. During the scaling-up phase: Under-thinking, Remaining non-committal, Not persisting enough in the chosen direction
Key Insight

As start-ups scale up, they need to move from hustling to making judgment calls.

Note: Experimentation helps discover market insights inductively. But, some people can discover market insights deductively too! Example: Steve Jobs. So, you need to figure what works best for you!