Too busy - or too blinkered?

Mar 04 2005 by Brian Amble Print This Article

Almost seven out of 10 companies say that they are "too busy" with day-to-day business to spend any time at all looking ahead and planning for the future.

But as Dr James Rieley asks in his column in the Daily Telegraph, how can organisations expect to survive into the future when no one is trying to determine what that future might bring?

Too many organisation spends all their time being reactive, he argues, focussing on short-term results rather than longer-term sustainability:

Most of the managers I speak to seem to have their diaries filled with ongoing, recurring problems that have never really been solved. They are inundated with assignments and responsibilities that feed the addiction to reactive thinking and fire-fighting.

Just look at the stories in the media Ė budget airlines that don't seem to care if they alienate their customers because they assume others will fill the seats.

But as Rieley points out, the ability, or in many cases willingness, to look to the future can be a make-or-break competency for companies.

Being "too busy" to try to bring clarity to potential scenarios is akin to driving your car at high speed day and night just to rack up as many miles as possible.

Sure, you may see your odometer climb quickly, but if you don't stop once in a while to check the engine or put petrol in, you will end up sitting on the side of the road watching your competitor cruise past.

Daily Telegraph | Too busy to see the oncoming train