How to Make it Better by Not Making it Worse
When failure is imminent, it doesn’t matter why it happened. Just shut-up and fix it.
Unskilled leaders expand problems.
Unfocused leaders make matters worse by doing too much.
What you don’t do, is the key to success when you’re under pressure.
Never ask, “How can we prevent this from happening again,” when failure’s at the door.
When you’re about to fail, forget long-term solutions. Focus on succeeding now.
Fix current issues – address causes later.
Don’t multiply distress by addressing systemic issues at the same time you’re solving urgent problems.
While solving pressing problems, don’t:
- Close down.
- Ask the wrong questions.
- Think more about problems than solutions.
- Teach lessons like, the reason this happened is…
Bonus: While solving pressing problems, solutions come before convenience or feelings.
Thanks to Facebook fans for their input on this list.
7 ways to succeed while under pressure:
- Identify the smallest problem that requires a solution.
- Focus maximum energy on the simplest short-term solution.
- Never expand problems; shrink them.
- Clarify what you don’t need.
- Keep everyone focused on current issues.
- Lower drama by speaking calmly but acting aggressively.
- Take charge, but stay open. An emergency isn’t the time for team meetings.
When failure is imminent, solve essential issues as quickly as possible. Let everything else go.
When problems are pressing and failure seems imminent ________.
When feeling pressure think about my Epic Vision of My Future.
When failure seems imminent understand it is only temporary showing me this way won’t work. No biggie, NEXT!!!
Focus on what I want, not what I do not want.
Saying I want to avoid panic brings about panic opportunities I then say I am going to try to ignore. Does that make sense?
That is why it is so important to choose wisely what to think. Only what I want.
I choose to think in the forward direction.
Very Practical tips. One must face up to signs of failure rather than denying it or burying one’s face in the sand. Mustapha Tahir. 05.25.2014
Thank you, Dan. The issue of reducing fear is not highlighted much in leadership literature, but is vital.
Panic is contagious and results in “fight or flight” reactions, while calm persistence in the face of adversity can prevent calamity. Calm persistence doesn’t mean stubbornness. The best leaders know when to sound an orderly retreat to avoid a rout.
Training and preparation for emergencies can help to reduce panic. Our son, an emergency room physician, often faces critical situations that would cause us to panic and flounder – but his training and those of the other doctors allow them to function day after day at a high level.
About 2000 years ago, a fisherman named John was known, along with his brother James, as Boanerges, “sons of thunder”. They wanted first place in His kingdom, and even asked Christ to send fire from heaven to scorch a village that wouldn’t listen to them.
Years later, after witnessing the love of his Lord on the cross and in turn taking care of Mary, John became known for his gentleness, and for his writing concerning love. He wrote, “There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. So the one who fears has not reached perfection in love.”
The 8th point of Deming’s famous list of 14 points mirrored John’s thoughts. Deming wrote, “Drive out fear.” The absence of fear is a prerequisite to grow trust, which in turn is a catalyst of organizational productivity. Leaders must never employ threats, for they cause fear and destroy trust. Even when disciplining up to the point of firing someone, leaders need to address issues fairly, with due process.
The question for us is, “Do we love our organization, its people, and those who profit from the goods and services it produces? Do we love them enough to train sufficiently to face difficult situations? Do we love them enough to stand calmly in the breach when things get tough? Does that love show enough that those we lead will trust us and avoid panic?
When problems are pressing and failure seems imminent, one should clarify to the person whom one is reporting. One should should not wander around to justify everyone what one did and what one plan to do in future. Rather one should find out suitable time, seek appointment of superior and clarify action, plans and future strategy. Plans and strategy should focus on meeting and addressing organisational goals. Even if one does not have any such plan, one should reflect in such a manner that show the concern and seriousness towards organisational development.
Many time problems multiply and inflate when employees do not meet with their bosses. Or when communication and interaction with people around is not frequent. Though such communication and interactions, many times are useless, but people make perception and convey message to the superiors.
When failure is imminent one should approach with action plan in short run and try to convince management about your plan. Also try to promise that you are going to achieve some extraordinary result soon. These things are important to change perception to overcome problems but result is even more important to meet your promise.
Timely advice – Thankyou Dan
When failure seems imminent…
1) Perspective- Maintain a perspective on a potential failure, so as not to globalize its impact. Failure is an important stepping stone on the road to success. Have faith in your capacity to overcome- to navigate setbacks and challenges and land on your feet. Actively resist the energy draining effects of fear-induced paralysis.You will need access to your full creative capacities for problem solving.
2) Visualize and plan for success- Once you have a sense of your capacity to overcome the worst, visualize success. Direct your energies and resources toward developing a plan to mitigate against the seemingly imminent failure. Give it your all.
3) Debrief/ Strategize– If successful, understand what brought you to the brink and learn from it. Develop systemic strategies to mitigate against a recurrence. If unsuccessful, despite all efforts to turn the failure around- regroup. Develop a plan to succeed beyond the failure, in the context of your new reality.