The longer I am in business, the more I think instinct plays a big part in decision making. There are some decisions that set a company's direction before there is ample data to support a firmer decision. For example, a company may decide to move into a new industry with a product simply because the CEO has an instinct the new direction would work.
Instinct itself isn't irrational; it is the summation of previous data points and experience that creates an indication of a direction. The problem is that sometimes there isn't words to express exactly why this new direction. That's where the word instinct comes into play.
It is important to cultivate this instinct. Like muscle, the more you train it, the more sensitive it gets and more accurate. The less training it gets, the less sensitive and the more you don't rely on it.
I've realized that I have an instinct on where the action or momentum is. That's where I spend most of my time in training.