He shared it with me after a very difficult decision he made in his business. He let a long-term employee go who had been with him since the beginning. Unfortunately, the company had outgrown this person. It was excruciatingly difficult, and he anguished for months.
Once he made the decision, his people were happier, he was happier, and the company was better off (so was the person who was fired, as he found a job that better suited him). In hindsight, my friend realized that if he had made the decision sooner, when it needed to be made, he would have saved everyone involved months of hassle. Ironically, when he finally made the decision, he realized only 36 hours of pain between delivering the news and executing the transition.
I have now had many clients that have experienced this same dynamic and have validated this truth.
You may be sitting there with a tough decision that needs to be made; maybe you’ve wrestled with this for months (maybe longer). I urge you to solve it for the long-term and greater good of your company. Save yourself and your people the hassle. After all, once you do it, you should only experience about 36 hours of pain.