Q: Is s/he who hesitates really lost? I like to think over my advice and decisions rather than giving a gut reaction when asked a question by a client.
A: Caution and care ward off making mistakes, but like everything else in life, there are lines to walk. Using your well-honed instincts is also a skill. For example at a client pitch, repeatedly responding to questions posed to distinguish your analytic abilities from others with “Let me get back to you on that” or “I’d need to give that some thought” won’t show your talents in the proper light. In that case, hesitation may well result in loss…of business. No one is recommending heedless or uneducated responses to clients, but when you have expertise and judgment, be willing to use it. In this regard, another maxim does ring true: it is never too late…to be the trusted advisor your clients want and need.