Recently a news agency reporter asked me about my thoughts on the future potential for opposition and challenges that might come to Hansen Group Company as it relates to some of its programs, initiatives and efforts. The question caught me a bit by surprise. I truthfully had not considered it in the past. However, as I thought briefly about how to handle unknown future challenges and obstacles, I responded with the following.
“My thoughts on opposition are these: There very well could be some challenges along the way. We expect those. We also expect that creativity, innovation and flexibility will enable us to find solutions to problems we are not yet aware of. We are committed to the goal and end result. We plan on evolving and growing as the (program) grows. In this way I am confident that we will be able to overcome most obstacles that come our way.”
Here are some expanded thoughts on that comment:
1. We must expect and prepare for rough seas. We will always have unexpected challenges and obstacles along the way. It is important to plan and prepare to the best of our ability and then move ahead with confidence.
2. We cannot plan or prepare for every unknown challenge, so we must be flexible in our processes and methods. Being too rigid and too firm is a dangerous thing. That is why skyscrapers are built to allow for flexing, shifting and moving as the wind blows.
3. I truly believe that creativity and innovation is the key to creating real value and insuring that we continue to thrive and grow. We must be constantly asking ourselves the question, “How can this be better?”
4. Nothing can defeat a “made up mind”. Once your mind is committed to a course of action or an end result, there is nothing that life or business can throw at you that will detour you from reaching your goal. The key is first being committed.
5. There is something wonderful about evolution, progress and change. Change and evolution always have a degree of pain and discomfort associated with them. Progress does not come without sore muscles. However, the benefits of evolution and progress are wonderful. It is the stuff that makes life and business worth doing. No one will ever honestly admit to themselves that they would like to stay the same forever and never change. We don’t like the pain, but we love the results. We just can’t be afraid to change, evolve and progress. We have to push the limits and be willing to do new things and step outside of our comfort zone. That is how evolution really happens.
6. No one can accurately predict the future all the time or in all things. Even though we do not know what the future holds, we can confidently move forward with optimism, enthusiasm and hope. Of course we will encounter challenges along the way, however, that should not stop us from starting the journey in the first place. We can move forward with a bright hope even though the way may not be clear. Some people call that faith. If anyone tells you that there is no place for faith in business, tell them to talk to Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Mark Cuban or a host of others who had faith and a bright hope in what they were doing. Faith is alive and well in business today and we need to harness its power to propel us forward despite an uncertain future.
In short, remember: 1. It is worth taking a minute and asking yourself what your position is on opposition. 2. Frame your thoughts and your attitude on the matter. 3. Set some goals. Share them with your team. 4. Make your plans to move forward. Follow up each week to make sure you are on course. 5. Adjust your plans as needed along the way. 6. Stay flexible and enjoy the journey.