By Ron Price
One of the advantages of being 66 years old is that I don’t get as anxious I used to when unexpected, negative events occur. Depending on how each event is interpreted, the current coronavirus disruption is, at a minimum, the seventh crisis I have experienced over the past 45 years while in a variety of leadership roles. These crises have included a major fire, negative front-page press coverage, a debilitating breakdown in our supply chain, regulatory abuse, major contracts broken, the great recession, and the tragedy of 9/11. And we have survived every one of them!
What to do? How are we to respond when our world is disrupted so dramatically? As I reflect on this and shift gears into problem-solving around a seventh major crisis, here are things that guide my thinking:
Get above the noise. There are businesses (such as the media and others) that thrive on crisis. It actually increases their “product inventory” and compels their customers to engage. I’m not one who thinks everyone in the media is evil with ill-intent. However, it is a fact that they get better ratings (and more income) the more we engage with what they are selling.