here’s been a lot of forced change over the last two years – for all of us. Some of us had to adjust to life with masks. Others had to adjust to life without loved ones. Even more had to adjust to supporting the insanity happening in our world today. These changes were basically thrust upon us, but, sadly, many are pushing back.
The phrase goes “people fear change.” The status quo is popular because it is predictable and, for the most part, less likely to fail. Now, most will tell you that the status quo never got people elevated in the world. “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take,” Wayne Gretzky once said.
But still, many fight tooth and nail to maintain the status quo for issues both big and small. The dreamers and the chance takers, however, often do it in silence, or in small groups.
There were some examples over the past several weeks of dream takers shooting their shot as it were and, predictably, it ruffled a lot of feathers.
Big problems need bold solutions. These days, there’s such a vacuum of leadership, even making a decision that everyone knows is coming but still has to happen is noteworthy. While not to be celebrated, the resignation of the New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and the withdrawal from Afghanistan ordered by President Biden fit that bill. Mask mandates are also coming to mind as well. We’ve been saying mask mandates are coming back for months and credit the leaders of the community for pulling that trigger – even when it was the basic and most obvious choice – because the backlash has been loud and obnoxious.
You look at the two billionaires having their own private yacht race with rocket ships over this past month. Jeff Bezos and Richard Branson lighting tens of millions of dollars on fire was certainly a bold choice. Maybe it’s even one that will eventually improve the world we live in – but on the surface looks like a hot dog measuring contest between the two of them.
You make bold choices and you’re subject to criticism – that comes with the job. Rarely is any decision universally applauded. Except for this week.
In some back office in some New York building, someone stood in front of a conference room at Major League Baseball headquarters and said, “I wonder if we could stage a baseball game at the site of the Field Of Dreams movie set in Iowa.” Jump ahead several years to last week when all of us watched a baseball game reminds us that magic sometimes happens and you can forget your troubles for a few hours while taking in a game. The Field of Dreams game was captivating and delivered on all fronts. Sure it was corny and a silly idea, but it was someone’s bold idea that easily could’ve gone south quickly – but this one didn’t. Someone invented what is bound to be a yearly tradition right there on the spot after coming up with a “Wouldn’t it be cool if…” sentence.
And that’s what taking risks does for us. A lot of times they fail. A lot of times they don’t go off the way we wanted them to. But every once in a while, they are pitch perfect – and you’d never get something like that by sticking to the status quo. You’d never get something like last week by fearing change.
Sometimes you just need to finish the sentence “Wouldn’t it be cool if….”
Companies – especially those designed to make money – tend to stick with what works and drive that into the ground. Bold companies can sometimes fall on their face.
MLB played a game in Iowa and it’s been the talk of social media the past week. It prompted those “wouldn’t it be cool if…” conversations. What about a game at the Grand Canyon? How about in Hawaii?
The risk you run is. . .
(Take chances with our man Chris Kamler on Twitter and other social media platforms, where you’ll find him as @TheFakeNed)