Risk and Dr. Seuss

I was talking with a friend over Christmas who told me of a crisis she had been through. She was in a foreign country and received word that a large contract of hers back home was having major unexpected difficulties.

Here she was, far from home and her customer. What was her first thought? Panic. The second was “Hold on a minute, what can I solve by panicking?” So she called a colleague who helped her out, she put the situation in a positive frame in her mind, and let it go.

The result? The contract wasn’t cancelled, things settled, and my friend got to enjoy her holiday at peace. Whether the contract was cancelled or not, my friend had decided that it would all work out, so that was a success in itself.

As Project Managers, we have decisions to make all of the time. Some of these decisions may cause us stress if we feel out of control. So – what to do? Besides having a risk strategy in place, with risk responses planned for those potential threats or opportunities, having the mindset to deal with stress can go a long way. If we know that things can happen and frequently do (thanks Dr. Seuss!), then we can handle them. Of course, when we work out how to proceed if a crisis does occur, we don’t need to focus on the potential problems and can dig up the prepared solution when/if they happen. Like having the masks ready-to-go on the airplanes.

May you be off to Great Places!

Brenda Fay