EMAIL RLONG; PEI.ORG
however, if taken to an extreme,
optimism can blind you to dangers.
If you see only the success you are
nearly certain lies ahead, you might
ignore problems that are standing
in your way.
3. It’s not your place. Front-line
service technicians and customer
service personnel are your best
early-warning system. A company’s
culture, though, can prevent that
front-line knowledge from reaching
the decision-makers. If managers
are domineering or are interested
in hearing only good news,
employees tend to stop voicing their
concerns. Those who ought to
speak up remain silent.
4. Something is better than nothing.
When things aren’t going well,
some owners and managers
respond too quickly. They know
they must do something to turn
things around, so they act without
fully vetting new ideas. They just
Y OU’RE ABOUT TO OPEN A NEW BRANCH. You’ve found a centrally located building, and one of your most
trusted employees has volunteered to be
the branch manager. You have a budget
for the projected revenue and expenses.
But the branch’s success will depend
largely on whether you have answered
one question: What could go wrong?
In many cases, this question is left out
when businesses launch new initiatives.
Here are four common reasons:
1. You’re in love. Have you ever fallen
in love with an idea? It happens all
the time. A thought pops into your
head, and you can’t get it out of your
mind. Before long, that idea is no
longer an option; it’s a plan. In your
mind, the new idea is perfect. It can
do no wrong.
2. You’re too optimistic. The best
leaders are positive, can-do people.
They consistently project sunny
attitudes. Optimism motivates,
inspires and attracts others, and no
one wants to follow a pessimist;
If you ;nd yourself slipping into any
of these patterns, remember one thing:
“What could go wrong?” is not a club to
kill good ideas. It is a shield to make
good ideas better.
So ask yourself, “What could go
wrong?” and encourage your employees
to do the same.
The ideas you love will be more
Your innate optimism will be rooted
Employees will know that you want
to hear what they think.
And during tough times, you’ll pursue
solutions — not whatever ideas arise ;rst.
What Could Go Wrong?
Associate General Counsel
Editor in Chief
Thoughts and Observations
From the General Manager