"Search Engine Optimization is definitely dead," they say. "PPC is the way to go."
The next day, they abruptly change their mind.
"Forget what I said yesterday. We can't just focus on PPC alone -- we've got to step up our efforts in SEO".
Pretty annoying, right?
If you're looking at this from a leadership point of view, you can see how employees would prefer to be managed by someone who is decisive, and doesn't waver or change their mind.
But that's not the way Jeff Bezos looks at it. According to the founder of Amazon, it's perfectly healthy to have an idea tomorrow that contradicted your idea today.
Now, you might be thinking isn't changing your mind a sign of weakness? Doesn't it show that you don't really know what you want?
Well, not quite. According to Bezos, changing your mind means that you're open to new points of view, new information, and new ideas that contradict or challenge your way of thinking.
In a 2012 Q&A with Jason Fried, co-founder of Basecamp, Bezos said that people who tend to be right "a lot" are the ones who change their minds.
"He's observed that the smartest people are constantly revising their understanding, reconsidering a problem they thought they'd already solved," writes Fried. "They're open to new points of view, new information, new ideas, contradictions, and challenges to their own way of thinking."
This allows you to constantly revise your understanding, and reconsider problems that you thought you've solved. At the end of the day, you come up with more innovative approaches, and improve upon your existing solutions.
On the flip side, Bezos says that people who tend to be obsessed with details that only support one point of view are the ones who get it wrong.
"If someone can't climb out of the details, and see the bigger picture from multiple angles, they're often wrong most of the time," Fried says of Bezos' approach.
The way I see it, what we're really talking about here is humility. If you're humble enough to acknowledge that someone who has a different opinion might be right, then this allows you to learn and grow more quickly, while improving your decision-making skills.
Let go, and consider other perspectives.
If you find it difficult to consider other points of view, then you've probably grown too attached to your ideas. In my work, I see this all the time. People forget what the goal is, and they fight to "be right" instead of fighting to do what's best for the customers.
This happened to my team once, right as we were about to launch a sales funnel. We had to decide what product we'd use as the upsell, and everyone started fighting for their own idea. Because we weren't able to come to an agreement and keep the big picture in mind, it delayed our launch by two months.
Now, the simplest way of training yourself to be more open to other points of view is to read widely, and interact with people from all walks of life. Personally, I use Audible to listen to audio books, and hire business coaches and consultants to challenge my ideas. When speaking to colleagues or friends, I also like to listen to other people's ideas before sharing my own.