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There is a synthetic rubber seal called an O-ring that is used in all sorts of machinery to seal a variety of liquids and gases. One day, many years ago, engineers from the manufacturing company of a specific O-ring, again notified a specific client that at around 32° F their product was known to lose pliability and would likely malfunction. Because the O-ring was to be used the next day for an important mission, engineers were sounding the alarm to other engineers for them not to proceed.
Well, one would assume that these smart people would go on to do the smart thing: postpone the mission. They did not. The next day, January 28, 1986, the space shuttle Challenger dramatically exploded, killing all aboard and mesmerizing the world.
We know these facts because of the subsequent commission that was formed to investigate this tragic “mistake.”
In my opinion, we are all facing a fork in the road. Every government and every U.S. State will be choosing to launch or not. “Open up” the economy or make sure that every safeguard is in place before you open. Save the astronauts or not.
Why have I presented this example? Because I am seeing the same Macro situation playing out on a Micro level. Many of the business owners I help, are facing a decision: hurry up and return to “normal” or make changes now and evolve to their next iteration.
The philosopher, George Santayana, famously said, “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”
In the movie, The Matrix, Morpheus holds out his hands to Neo and offers up either a pill of knowledge or a pill of blissful ignorance. Red pill or blue pill; know your enemy or live in peace. Decisions, decisions.
We know that as individuals and companies, we all make mistakes. However, to mitigate these, it pays to study the many different reasons WHY mistakes are made. The lack of clear goals, strategies, tactics, discipline, accountability, forensic analysis, and evolution only scratch the surface. There are dozens and dozens more.
Is there an ignored O-ring in your business? I help companies evolve to their next level. Red pill, blue pill. You choose.