For most, this past week was the first full week of crisis operations and, like Cohen Veterans Network (CVN), hopefully you approached this new reality with confidence and optimism. While things are going to remain uncertain for some time, especially in the day-to-day operations at your home/ business/ organization, we cannot allow ourselves to get lulled into a routine that doesn’t allow us to identify new challenges, hazards, or unproductive behaviors. We cannot settle with; “we are doing alright” or “we are doing as well as everyone else or “we got this.” Just as the enemy of great is good; complacency is the enemy of excellence. To be satisfied in this early phase of the crisis is dangerous! In many ways our early successes in managing this crisis may actually prevent us from seeing hidden problems. We cannot let this happen!
“Success is a lousy teacher. It seduces smart people into thinking they can’t lose,” said Bill Gates.
We haven’t figured this out yet! We must continue to reach out to each other, peers, leaders, and colleagues, to extend support and remind them we are better together in addressing this challenge. It is very important for organizational leaders to lead with meta leadership, to leverage each other’s resources, intellectual capacity, and shared systems so we can come out on top together. There are no short-cuts!
We must promote a culture that regularly identifies and solves new problems to avoid yielding to tiredness. It is imperative to seek advice and receive feedback daily from others across the entire organization up and down the ranks. Communications must remain open, honest, and candid. Leaders must remind their team to stay engaged, open to contrarian views, creative, and positive.
“More people are ruined by victory, I imagine, than by defeat,” said Eleanor Roosevelt.
Keep your hustle! Just as there are challenges, there are opportunities. We cannot lose our passion for our work. We can’t settle! There are so many opportunities awaiting us to do more during this crisis. Reimagine your reality and consider doing something new and creative. Embrace everything with a new frame of reference. Don’t be afraid – we may fail here and there, but we cannot succeed without the courage to challenge the status quo. There is always more to do.
I get it. There are so many unknowns at this point, but over time we will all learn – if we keep our hustle – and we adjust for the better. Stay agile and alert in the present while seeking opportunities to grow, to do more, and to be better for the future.
By Dr. Anthony M. Hassan, Ed.D, LCSW
Chief Executive Officer and President
Cohen Veterans Network