Stop Putting Out Fires

I think it used to be my job to put out fires. Though I was hired to implement projects, or support certain systems there was always a fire to put out; there was always something that went wrong.

What I figured out later that what was wrong was my perspective; my attitude. What was wrong was my inability to see the situations for what they were.

I saw them as fires that needed to be put out, not as an opportunity to prepare for a great implementation, or to make a positive change or difference in the way we went about our system.

I was re-active, and felt I couldn’t catch-up. Had I been pro-active, then the system would have had to catch-up with me because I would have always been ahead the curve.

Stop spending your days putting out fires. If there’s a fire and you set out to only put it out, then you’ve already lost.

Deal with the fire by preparing well so that the next fire doesn’t come; leaving greater growth and higher chances for better opportunities to be ahead of the curve.



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Did you like this? Share it:
  • Michael Good

    Rob, makes me think of how it’s better to respond instead of react. There’s only a small difference there in the approach, but it can make a big diffence in the outcome.

  • Ann J Musico

    That also makes me think that when you are truly well prepared and have thought through your processes, there’s less chance of wasting time on putting out fires.

  • Michael Wright

    Sometimes we gotta get “burned” a few times before we’ll be proactive and stop playing with those fires!

  • Anonymous

    Yes sir, for sure! I’ve definitely had my share of burns… And those are the hard lessons that can help keep refining us.

  • Anonymous

    I agree. Preparation minimizes risks, but more importantly it sets us up for opportunity that’s going to come no matter what. If we’re fixed on just putting out fires, we might miss that opportunity.

  • Anonymous

    “Huge” difference in the outcome… “reacting” gives our response to something we can’t control, where as “response” can be deliberate by our choice.

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