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There was a waiting list, so if you missed two weeks without a good reason you were out. My young friend missed two of the first three sessions, I booted him, and his manager came to plead his case. But when things go wrong in Inventory Control, he has to be there. He's the man.
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None of these people, whom he hired and trained, can fill in for him? He's smart enough to juggle daily disasters but not smart enough to impart his accumulated wisdom to others? Useless without a crisis No doubt, being the self-appointed corporate Spider-Man is a high. The problem is, superhero behavior — except in situations that really require it — can hurt a company.
For one, people who thrive on crises often careen from one disaster to the next. They never focus on day-to-day operations, implementing improvements over time, or the long-term direction of their business. They're too busy battling the forces of evil — and it's hard to move forward when you're constantly on battle alert. Beyond that, people who live for the moment can be useless in noncrisis periods. They can't seem to get a report done or finish the quality audit or copy edit the annual report.
They languish until the next fire. They don't really want to fix the problem for good, they just want that red phone to ring. Failing to follow up I once went to a meeting where a salesperson was saluted for his bold actions on behalf of customers. According to the sales manager, this fella went right into the shipping department, grabbed two boxes off the shelf, and drove them in his own car to a customer who had been waiting two weeks.
Now, that's service! Wow, I said, I had no idea we had those kinds of shipping delays. How did the salesperson — or his manager — follow up?
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Did you circle back with the shipping department to solve the problem? I'm no expert on Total Quality, but I don't think you'd win any Malcolm Baldridge Awards with salespeople delivering products from their Toyotas. Real corporate heroism is more often calm and steady than loud and theatrical. Real change isn't nearly as visible as you might think. It comes more often through collaboration and experimentation than through sharpshooting and screaming into cell phones. And often, it comes slowly.
Junkie Business: The Evolution and Operation of a Heroin Dealing Network by Lee D. Hoffer
Breaking the habit Could you be a crisis junkie? I have a little of that in me. But the older I get, the more I see the value of heading off a crisis before it hits. I don't need the adrenaline spike at work — for that, I have a two-year-old at home who dives headlong off the back of the couch. There's something powerful and glamorous about the late-night War Room meetings, the brinksmanship, the frantic back-and-forth faxing that a business crisis so often brings.
But as with any addiction, in the light of day you eventually realize that it's time to get free. You can conquer your adrenaline habit if you try — if you realize that you can do a day's work without listening for an alarm every moment. So pull the needle out of your arm — and tackle that unsexy pile of papers on your desk.
You might even learn to enjoy it. Show discussion. Put the crisis junkie in rehab Employees addicted to emergencies neglect daily tasks Below: x Jump to discuss comments below discuss x Jump to data See the latest rates around the country data x Latest market data DJIA. By Liz Ryan. Discuss: Discussion comments. Expand Collapse. View all comments. When the lion cannot find meat, it eats grass. When a woman is hungry, she says, Roast something for the children that they might eat.
One whose seeds have not sprouted does not give up planting. What is bad luck for one man is good luck for another. A bridge is repaired only when someone falls into the water. What is inflated too much will break into fragments. However much it rains on you, no wild banana tree will grow on your head. One who relates with a corrupt person likewise gets corrupted.
More precious than our children are the children of our children. Confiding a secret to an unworthy person is like carrying grain in a bag with a hole. A bird that allows itself to be caught will find a way of escaping. If you are ugly you must either learn to dance or make love. If there were no elephant in the jungle, the buffalo would be a great animal. The brother or sister who does not respect the traditions of the elders will not be allowed to eat with the elders.
No tattoo is made without blood. Live patiently in the world know that those who hate you are more numerous than those who love you. A child one does not instruct on return, one instructs him when going. A canoe does not know who the leader is when it turns over, everyone gets wet. Water that has been begged for does not quench the thirst. Let it be a bite of a cockroach and fly with the wind. The song of a stranger-woman is answered after she has gone. The humble pay for the mistakes of their leaders.
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To love someone who does not love you, is like shaking a tree to make the dew drops fall. The vultures would not land at the village in which there is a wise old man. The eye cannot penetrate darkness. Copying everyone else all the time, the monkey one day cut his throat. When a king reigns, it is thanks to the people when a river sings, it is thanks to the stones. If the palm of the hand itches it signifies the coming of great luck.
A flea can trouble a lion more than a lion can trouble a flea. So many little things makes a man love a woman in a BIG way. If a blind man says he will throw a stone at you, he probably has his foot on one. Happiness requires something to do, something to love and something to hope for. A bird that flies from the ground onto an anthill does not know that it is still on the ground.
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The rain does not recognize anyone as a friend it drenches all equally. The betrothed of good is evil the betrothed of life is death the betrothed of love is divorce. Never marry a woman who has bigger feet than you. No matter how beautiful and well crafted a coffin might look, it will not make anyone wish for death. The heart of the wise man lies quiet like limpid water.
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Those who accomplish great things pay attention to little ones. If two wise men always agree, then there is no need for one of them. If you are filled with pride, then you will have no room for wisdom. The more feathers a chicken has, the bigger it looks. Do not tell the man who is carrying you that he stinks.
When your neighbour is wrong you point a finger, but when you are wrong you hide. A crowd can easily overpower a bull. There is not such a thing in the world as a sheep of many colours. Even in the monastery there is occasion for song and merriment. A boat cannot go forward if each rows his own way. A little rain each day will fill the rivers to overflowing. Gold should be sold to the one who knows the value of it.
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A child does not laugh at the ugliness of his mother. A deaf ear is followed by death and an ear that listens is followed by blessings. A big fish is caught with big bait. Wealth is like hair in the nose: it hurts to be separated whether from a little or from a lot. If you think you have someone eating out of your hands, it is a good idea to count your fingers. Where you will sit when you are old shows where you stood in youth. Words are sweet, but they never take the place of food. Pretend you are dead and you will see who really loves you. A woman is never old when it comes to the dance she knows.
When the baobab tree has fallen, the goats start climbing on it. Eat when the food is ready speak when the time is right. One who causes others misfortune also teaches them wisdom.