Perspective: When A “Crisis” Is Not A Crisis

On the eve of what the UK media would have you believe is a tsunami of constitutional and financial uncertainty, there is barely a negligible murmur outside of Scotland. Why? There is a general acceptance tonight that the probability (less than 20%) and the seriousness (minor impact on the UK economy) do not in all likelihood suggest a crisis. Bad news for those doomsday prognosticators, who only make money on the back of others’ perceived sense of fear. The lesson for business is that in any growth market, there is a need to separate real crises (outbreak of EBOLA) from events that in fact aren’t a crisis at all.

  1. Maintaining a rational perspective demands that you take the “emotion” (media agenda and personal biases) out of the “logic” (the probability and the seriousness of the impact).
  2. Focus only on hard evidence and strong anecdotal observations.
  3. Recognise that in a world of “omni-communication”, he or she who shouts loudest (Piers Morgan) from the largest platform (television, print, radio or Twitter) is rarely held accountable for their predictions. How many pollsters have ever lost their jobs or wealth, it is probably equivalent to television weather presenters?
  4. Make your own mind up and have the courage to back your own convictions (“trust”)

Tomorrow the world will not stop, there will not be a financial meltdown and business people will be out there deploying capital to attractive growth opportunities. Make sure that you are at the front of the line, not distracted by terrible advice or a self-inflicted fear of the unknown.

©  James Berkeley 2014. All Rights Reserved.

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