A crisis is a terrible thing to waste

10 years ago, Posted in Point of View

At the Gazelles growth conference last week, I had the opportunity to see Jim Collins speak. One of the things I liked most about his speech, is the depth of research that he has done to examine what makes companies truly great.

Jim has made a life study out of the differences between high performing companies and those who failed to excel. He comes to some interesting conclusions that are often left out of the popular media.

One of the things I found most interesting according to his research was that turbulence and tummult causes nothing. In other words, a crisis, or an outside event, had very little to do with a company’s long term success or failure.

I think that is worth thinking about in the world we live in today. In this current environment, it is very easy to blame outside events.  The problem with doing that is:  that according to the research, it is rarely the outside event.

What really matters is what the company does prior to, and during turbulent times that makes it truly great or not.

There is a power in that…..knowing that you….ultimately shape your own destiny.

I know for our own company, when faced with one of the worst housing crises in the last century, our team looked inside at what we they could do better. What needed to change?  They were accountable and never blamed the market.  They also didn’t blame each other…..they just looked at what they could control and brought forward healthy debate.

It’s a good thing they did.

They found some incredible opportunities to improve upon our business and prove the saying that “A crisis is a terrible thing to waste”.


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