Plan To Cross That Bridge BEFORE You Get There!
By Terry Brock for Steemit & DSound
Recently Skype had some technical issues that resulted in some sporadic outages for some. I experienced that on a Skype video call I had with a colleague. Fortunately both of us had learned how to use another tool called Zoom, and we switched to that quickly and were able to share our screens, collaborate on an issue, and come to resolution. It is important to plan ahead for potential problems and have contingency plans in place.
You might have heard that old saying," We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it." I think people who say that mean that they shouldn't be bothered over something now and will be better off later. Sometimes it is said as a procrastination facilitating response. Unspoken, but probably felt strongly in that saying, is that people will be able to cross the bridge later when they get to it.
That kind of thinking can be very harmful in life and business.
On important matters of life and business it is best to have contingency plans. It is true that we don't know the future and even if we do plan, circumstances can change. However, that doesn't negate the necessity to have contingency plans.
The famed Alabama football coach, Bear Bryant, was known for having many contingency plans for each play. He had many plans ready to go just in case certain circumstances changed, as they often did. This is wise for football and for business.
It is very good to make plans on how you will cross that bridge before you arrive. Think about what are likely scenarios for critical situations. To continue our analogy, is the bridge safe? Is the bridge covered with ice? Is the bridge sturdy? Is there likely to be congestion which can delay your arrival? These are the kind of questions that you want to ask to make sure you not only arrive at the bridge, but are able to cross it safely.
Of course it is not wise to invest too much time, money, and energy into those matters that aren’t likely to create problems. It is always wise to have your backup plans and contingency plans ready to go in case of a problem. It is wise to check your fire extinguishers before the fire occurs. You want to make sure that likely scenarios are examined and you have backup plans and alternative routes ready to go before they happen as much as possible.
I like the old Arab saying that says "Dig your well before you're thirsty.” Today you want to do that on several fronts.
Physical. Make sure that you're in physical shape to withstand whatever is going to happen. This is imperative at any stage of life. Have medical options available to deal with emergencies and likely areas where you'll need the help of a professional.
Financial. I listened to a podcast a while back by James Altucher where he said a business needs to have six months of expenses available at any time to handle emergencies. This seems like a good rule of thumb for many businesses. Make sure you have adequate savings to withstand the inevitable setbacks that can and will happen in life.
Deal flow. It is a good practice to have more customers lined up than you think you will have come through. Anyone who's been in business for a while knows that the "sure thing" often doesn't come through. I have found that operating at 125% to 150% of capacity helps to deal with inevitable losses that are part of business.
There are other areas where you need to dig your well before you're thirsty. Think through what is necessary and likely to happen in your particular situation. Doing the right planning in building contingency plans in advance can save you a lot of heartache when you arrive at your own version of the bridge. Then you'll be able to cross the bridge and even enjoy the scenery!
Pease leave your comments below and share this with your community. This is a message we want to pass along to others so they can benefit from it. I look forward to hearing from you!
Terry L. Brock, MBA, CSP, CPAE
Member, Professional Speaker Hall of Fame
Certified Speaking Professional
2018 Recipient of the National Speakers Association's Highest Award, The Cavett
Master of Ceremonies
Professional Video Coach
Syndicated Columnist with Business Journals (43 papers across USA, 11 million monthly page views)
See some wonderful (!) videos on my YouTube Channel!
My TEDxBocaRaton presentation.
Former Editor-in-Chief for AT&T's Networking Exchange Blog
Former Chief Enterprise Blogger for Skype
► Listen on DSound
► Listen from source (IPFS)