We recently asked Mike Davis to share his thoughts on better decision making.

With over 20 experience in enterprise IT Program and Project Delivery, Mike now applies his skills working as a tech entrepreneur to transform businesses into leaders of the digital economy, leveraging their existing IT assets to build a digital DNA.

What is your favourite, or most used, inspirational quote?

April 23, 1910, Theodore Roosevelt from his “Citizenship in a Republic” speech at the Sorbonne, Paris:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the one who points out how the strong stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the one who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends oneself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that their place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

Modified to replace Teddy’s use of “man” with gender-neutral options!

What does great decision making look and feel like for you?

In my opinion, a great decision is defined by how well we utilise the space between stimulus and response; how well we can accept our emotional reaction to the stimulus but allow it to pass over without overwhelming us, and instead take the time to form a rationalised response that aligns with our values. 

When was a time you were at your decision making best?

When I was emotionally unattached to the outcome and was still sufficiently skilled in the subject matter. Most recently that has been during enterprise IT program or project delivery contracts. In these scenarios decisions about resourcing, methodology, governance and stakeholder engagement are second nature, and are not usually personal, meaning there are no emotional restraints on making good decisions. 

Who inspires you? Why?

Marcus Aurelius. His words in Meditations of calm dedication to values greater than his own selfish needs when he was in such a position of power that could have been so easily abused inspire me every day.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to be a better decision maker?

Dedicate yourself to the cause of being the best you, first and foremost. Make this your primary purpose above everything else. Then, no matter how things work out, you can be assured that your decisions couldn’t have been better.

What are you reading/watching at the moment?

Meditations by Marcus Aurelius. Atomic Habits by James Clear

What is the most effective strategy you use for keeping your Ape (your emotional reactive state) in check?

I have a rough morning routine I work through when I wake up which includes the study of stoic philosophy/literature, self-reflection journaling, and 10 minutes of meditation using the “Calm” app to help develop mindfulness. After some trial and error, I found some benefit in each of these activities and included them all in 30-40 minute routine.

What type of decision maker are you?

Questioning Activist.

Interested in discovering your own S-DMF profile? Complete our survey and find out today!


To connect with Mike Davis:




%d bloggers like this: