April 4, 2022

You can’t cross a chasm in two small jumps.David Lloyd George

The first quarter of 2022 represented enough change for the entirety of the year. An Omicron surge, the largest war in Europe since World War II, and a cascading global energy, food security and humanitarian crisis. Broken supply chains and inflation have only been matched by the number of jobs being created and capital being invested by businesses and the government. Bring on the second quarter.

I’m seeing a lot of reports that suggest that businesses, and leaders in general, are underestimating the impact of all these things. My response is that they may be, but it is more likely that they are growing callous to the river of issues flowing at them for the past few years. This doesn’t mean they aren’t acting, but that we are growing accustomed to this environment. On the positive side of the ledger, I believe that anyone who has managed a business, government, or organization in the past few years can handle anything. What were once insurmountable obstacles are merely agenda items to discuss, deal with, and navigate.

The opposite is also true. Managers can become numb as the daily crisis comes across their screens. They can become hardened to the compounding nature of such issues on their people and their organization, and they can begin to only think short-term Said differently, we can miss the larger narratives playing out because of the flurry of incoming problems before us.

What I would challenge us with this week is whether you are a leader, an associate, or an engaged citizen, take an hour to think of a headline far into the future. Beyond the current day by 10, 20 or even 50 years. What action could you take that would make a positive contribution to your company or community in that time frame? What seed could be planted or foundation created that would be appreciated by a future generation, even if the world is different and you are not present to see it? I would be interested to know what you generate by taking this time, and what actions you may take by pausing from the here and now.

Let’s have a special week, lift each other up, and move forward together.

-Kenny McDonald