PRIME: Ensuring Aligned Action

This month we asked: How do you feel about employees who don’t agree with a decision?

October 01, 2014

Our PRIME advisory panel includes some of the remodeling industry’s top professionals. This month we asked, “How do you feel about employees who don’t agree with a decision?”

Ensure all employees follow final decision

As president of the company, it is my job to make decisions that keep my company moving forward. In order to make an informed decision, I make sure I accumulate enough information before making that decision. In the case of my senior staff, they all have opinions and they voice them; but in the end, they know their job is to follow through on whatever decision is made, even if they do not agree with it. I have no ill feelings if someone does not agree with my decisions—that’s just part of business, as long as they do their job to accomplish and not impede the goal.

Rob Levin, President
Statewide Remodeling, DFW, TX

Listen to employees input

At Neil Kelly, we have a collaborative decision-making process that gets us to the finish line with agreement on many of the decisions we make. Especially on the big issues, we get input from our employees before we make changes. My philosophy about managing a company is a “democratic dictatorship.” We get a lot of input and if it becomes a tough call, I make the final decision. No matter what, and especially during tough times, any company management is going to be second-guessed. Good leaders always listen; your employees will know you are listening if you are sincere.

Tom Kelly, President
Neil Kelly Inc., Portland, OR

Ultimately achieve buy-in

Disagreement with decisions is inevitable but achieving buy-in and aligned action is critical. It’s important that each team member know the what, why, and the risks of each objective and how their role contributes to success. I have often disagreed with decisions made in our company only to see that objective achieved because of spirited leadership and great execution by our team. I understand that being wrong is also part of leading and that great decision-makers are merely right more than they are wrong. It’s important that leaders listen to the dissonant voices on their team and understand why they might disagree. None of us are perfect.

Scott Mosby, President
Mosby Building Arts, St. Louis, MO

Consider all input before final decisions

I feel fine with differing opinions and thoughts from other team members. It’s OK to disagree. A leader is responsible for all the ramifications of that final decision. Employees should know you considered their input but made your own final decision. Ultimately,  they will feel valued and appreciated.

Jay Cipriani, President
Cipriani Remodeling Solutions, Woodbury, NJ

Debate ensures proper solution

It is healthy to have disagreement within the company. The last thing I want as a business owner is to have a bunch of “yes” people. Our management team members are smart, talented thought leaders who all have been hired because of those traits. Debate amongst the management team keeps everyone sharp and flushes out the best solution to the issue.

Bill Simone, President
Custom Design & Construction, El Segundo, CA

Joy Kilgore is president of Executive Business Approach LLC, PRIME and PRIME Alliance Summit. For more information, visit

The Professional Remodeler PRIME Advisory Panel  

PRIME brings together the best-of-the-best minds in the remodeling industry. This premier council of industry leaders sets the trends in today’s economy for tomorrow’s success.

2014 PRIME ADVISORY PANEL MEMBERS: Bill Baldwin, Hartman Baldwin Design/Build; Jay Cipriani, Cipriani Remodeling Solutions; Nick Cogliani, NEWPRO; Chris Edelen, Consultant; Sal Ferro, Alure Home Improvements; Tom Kelly, Neil Kelly; Joy Kilgore, EBA PRIME; Rob Levin, Statewide Remodeling; Emily Lindus, Lindus Construction; Gary Marrokal, Marrokal Design & Remodeling; Scott Mosby, Mosby Building Arts; Bill Simone, Custom Design & Construction; and Joe Smith, LeafGuard of Central Iowa.

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