I was watching ‘Meet The Press’ a few Sundays ago, and they played a clip, in black and white, from 30 years ago, when oil company execs were grilled over their profit-taking, and politicians and media figures agreed they complete destruction of the American economy was only minutes away thanks to skyrocketing oil prices.
The broadcaster didn’t catch the irony of the same handwringing going on this Sunday. The same hysterical, dire predictions being made. Presumably, 30 years from now, the host of ‘Meet The Press’, former President Hillary, will be showing these clips – and again, some hysterical wailing will be underway.
Yes, we DO have real problems.
Mostly, fortunately, the marketplace itself will sort them all out and re-arrange them and fix some, forestall others.
I don’t mean to downplay the realities. But I also want to FIRMLY make the point that hysterical predictions of doom have been a media mainstay and coffee shop and unhappy hour fodder, day in, day out, for far longer than you or I have been alive.
Most re-occur again and again. Some admittedly do gradually grow in severity over time. Regardless, the important thing for us is not to participate in the panic.
Privately, the responsible businessperson always carefully considers worst case possibilities and, when possible, insures against the worst. But the entrepreneur must focus on the best, on opportunities, on progress.
We know that, factually, the glass is simultaneously half empty and half full. It’s not an either/or choice, as the foolish optimists or cynical pessimists would each insist. It is a situation, a circumstance, a “what is”, nothing more, nothing less.
Publicly, the leader of a business must keep others focused forward. You have a mandated role, a responsibility, to counter woe-is-us voices with your own voice of progress, hope, expectation and success.
Ultimately, general circumstances need never determine your circumstances.
Unless and until you embrace that idea, you operate at the whim of others.