Our market is in the tank … What do I do ?
The question is a common one these days … and I wish it wasn’t the question leaders ask. Because, it tells me there is a leadership problem.
An effective leader would not ask – “what do I do?” … but would ask – “where are we in our plan?” … an effective leader would know what to do and they would have known what to do, well before the market started to slip or their business tanked.
It amazes me to read about a company (no names please) losing $200 million in a quarter (instead of achieving a budgeted profitable quarter) and the CEO sends out a press release indicating that they are going to look at all possible ways to lower costs to get back on track. Well gee boss BRILLIANT !!
Why didn’t you think of this 3 months ago … or 6 months ago … or if you were half decent, a year ago ?
The problem I see is too many leaders do a poor job of planning – long range planning – strategic planning. They may go through the motions of a formal process, but some just aren’t good at planning. Leaders who have difficulty planning should get some help.
Exceptional leaders do not spend much time in “today”, they look ahead 1 to 3 years and plan accordingly. They will review the progress in their business plans today – modify as necessary and move on to the picture down the road.
To key to survive and thrive in a down market is planning … not reacting. There is no doubt that many things will have to be done to survive, but decisions must be made in the context of a well thought out plan. A survival plan must consider today and the future – otherwise there will be no future.
Don’t make a bad quarter become a last minute crisis … stakeholders deserve better.