Business Challenges

Avoid Going Snow Blind in 2017

I was returning from a client meeting the other evening when I came upon a sudden snow blizzard. That may sound like an odd statement, but at this time of year in Canada it’s not uncommon to drive into and out of snowstorms.

If you aren’t sure what I mean, check out the photo below which I took while parked in the middle of the road.

Snow Blind

When you come across a sudden blizzard there are three simple rules:

1. Don’t panic. Stay calm and slow down while avoiding hitting the brakes.
2. Don’t attempt to look too far ahead as the snow will create confusion. Instead, focus on the roadway directly in front of your car.
3. Use landmarks on either side of the road, such as street signs or telephone poles, to ensure you remain on the road.

These may sound overly simplistic, but trust me when entering a whiteout at speed your initial reaction is often to do the opposite.

  • Panic and immediately hit the brakes
  • Try to peer too far ahead into the blinding snow
  • Stare directly at the snow banks on either side of the car (and we all know what happens when you stare at something while driving)

After navigating through the blizzard it struck me that these simple rules, although they often seem counter intuitive, are the same rules that help an organization survive during turbulent times.

Think about that for a moment.

What I’m suggesting is that when facing challenges in business there are three simple rules that the entire organization needs to respond with:

1. Don’t panic and hit the brakes. Keep doing what you know you are good at.
2. Rather than attempting to predict the future, consider instead the opportunities and challenges currently in font of you and focus your energy here.
3. Don’t attempt to make any sudden moves. Focus instead on the path before you and move forward slowly.

Like a snowstorm, turbulent times in business can be unpredictable and scary, particularly when you are amidst them. Keep these three simple rules in mind and focus your energy on helping your team to follow them and you’ll always come out the other side unscathed and refocused.

© Shawn Casemore 2016. All rights reserved.

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