Uncertain Times

By Bob Morrell on May 5, 2017

When we engage in coaching conversations with executives and salespeople, we focus on their personal goals and objectives. In recent months those goals have been affected by world events that have caused ‘uncertain times’. We see things happen on the news, we read the papers and we get inundated with posts on the internet. One way or another, we take on board that news and consider how it may, or may not affect us.

What this means is that our long term plans seem somehow less achievable and we wonder about what we need to change to maintain those goals as they are, and in some cases, diminish the chances of falling short. So what happens? We delay decisions. We delay action. We decide to wait for more information which will then help us to hedge our bets more accurately. We change plans and goals based on assumptions of what may happen.

So, what information do you want? What do you want to happen? Which world event would be the one that would cause you to issue a sigh of relief and get back into the world of secure safety. If you really consider that, you realise that these days we shouldn’t be surprised at any major changes that happen in the world. They are inevitable. In the same way, many major events take place, and nothing really changes. So we develop all that angst only to realise we needn’t have worried at all.

We were once asked to train some senior managers in forecasting their revenues for the next few years. However, we realised all we needed to do was say, ‘Here’s what’s going to happen: some months will be much worse than you expected, and some will be much better. A few will be about what you thought. That's definite. So now just forget about forecasting and concentrate on running your business as best you can.’

You have immediate tasks, strategies and actions to implement and engage with. So concentrate on them. Let them be your major focus. Don’t look too far ahead because there’s no point. Just get the current projects done as well as you can. Then focus on the next, then the next. Remember, ‘By the yard it’s hard, by the inch it’s a synch!’ The rest of the world will take care of itself, and you will be able to move towards your goals with more confidence.