Being proactive rather than just reactive could be the difference between success and failure of your business. Of course disaster could strike at any time and sometimes those disasters can’t be predicted or even be in contemplation but many can be anticipated and these are the ones you should take time to consider before they strike.
The problem with a reactive stance
Remember that last time you were in a strange place all alone. You probably felt a bit dis-orientated, a little confused, maybe your heart began racing a bit faster. There may not have been any reason to worry but still these human traits kick in, so imagine what it is like when you are really under pressure, when you are up against it and you have to make the correct decision. In times of stress our reactive decisions are often limited. However calm you may remain, you will never have the full range of options open to you as you would like. More often than not we react to cope and then continue to struggle on the back of it until the immediate danger has passed. Reactive decisions are not to be sneered upon – they can be the most creative and some of the best decisions you ever make – but making them in a more controlled environment, when there is less risk if that decision is not the best, will help keep your decisions more business minded.
Being proactive is more about taking decisions more methodically, covering all bases, thinking about all potentials, the goods and the bads, not just waiting to see what happens. Some would say it is too restrictive, but in truth it is all about being business-like and looking at the way even best laid plans can go wrong.
That’s worse not worst
Planning for the worst case scenario is not necessarily what being proactive is about. In fact if you planned for the very worst you would probably be shutting up business now anyway through the sheer stress of what is in contemplation. Plan for the worse, not worst, so plan in the knowledge that things will go wrong but normally each and every issue can be simply solved with a clear head. Thinking ahead as to what could go wrong means you will have solutions to avoid things reaching that worst case scenario anyway.
You can still take risks
Don’t think planning ahead means eliminating risks. This is real business, not some theoretical model in a textbook. Indeed risk, is the route to success, but calculated risks, which is where the proactive approach helps in giving you a clear picture of everything before it happens. Being proactive means you aren’t backed into a corner as you often are with a reactive approach, and that often means you have more choice, more selection and thus more calculation of the risk. Here at 123-reg we know all about the benefits of being proactive and also how that can sometimes mean taking what many perceive as a risk. Our team and parent company were recognised with a Social Buzz Award for its White Paper,Webfusion DDoS Attack and use of Social Media in Crisis Management, which outlined the way that Webfusion utilised social media in the face of a major Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack in May 2012.
Being proactive is all about snuffing out issues as quickly as they arise, being able to manage them more effectively because you have already contemplated what may or may not happen. It is about controlling your own destiny and understanding your business and marketplace. Being proactive is not actually about being boring, rigid or robotic, it is in fact about being more exciting, cutting-edge and simply acting more logically.