If you are one of our local readers, you may have noticed what happened here in Charlottesville, Virginia only about two weekends ago. It was a lovely Saturday morning in the upper 70's F, which was ridiculously warm for these parts. Folks were out in shorts and T-shirts enjoying the summer-like weather. Then, around 2:00 pm the sky became ominously dark and a strange sound was heard outside. Loud thumps battered the cars and the ground as small, perfectly round balls of hail came through in a storm. Heat one minute and ice the next!
The climate has still been up, down and all around in the last few weeks, causing one to turn on the air conditioner in the car one day and put salt on the ground for ice the next day. Ah, spring! This wacky season brings a lot of change and, at times, frustration. It's the same in the professional world right now.
There are many things that are in flux in the United States at this very moment. Those things have many business people scratching their heads wondering which direction to go or what action to take as the country adjusts to a new federal administration. The economy is also changing and unpredictable. This makes for what some might call a "wild ride" until things normalize.
So, how do you, as a leader or as an entrepreneur hold on, survive and hopefully, continue to thrive during this volatile season? There are a few principles that can help you to succeed even during times of unpredictability and rapid change:
1. Remind yourself and your team of your core values. Core values help you to maintain true to your goals and principles when having to make decision about the future. It's best to stay true to your values in every decision-making process.
2. Remain steady and consistent as much as possible. Like most people, your customers, clients and staff will find great comfort in relying on your same excellent products, services and policies when so many other things are changing around them. They will appreciate the stability and be more likely to stick around as a loyal partner with you and your company.
3. Avoid making knee-jerk reactions. As is true in so many situations requiring change, it's best not to react to a changing situation too quickly, but to take time to adequately analyze and review the situation and then to take the best appropriate action based on all the relevant information. This will avoid making decisions that are too drastic, causing unnecessary loss or damage.
4. Be proactive. If you can identify reasonable possible changes that could affect you or your business, your leadership team can analyze what protective measures might be put in place to be prepared for some eventuality. Perhaps that are cost effective measures that could be put into place now that will minimize loss and adequately manage risk. Think of it this way, it may not rain during your trip , but it's not a big burden to carry a small umbrella when you travel!
Following these simple tips can help you to keep your business running smoothly with minimal interruption, damage or loss while the political and economic climate is changing daily.
Thanks and happy Spring!
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Cynthia Murray is the founder and CEO of Cynthia Murray Enterprises, LLC. She is an international speaker, author and leadership consultant/coach.
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