Last week, I was chatting with a friend who is a former bank chief executive office.
He said something very powerful and I want us to focus on that today. He said that most times, people are lost in seeing the big problem and yet inside the problem, there are pockets of good things.
By focussing on the big problem, we lose sight of the great opportunities inside the problem. There can’t be problems without opportunities.
We all know that war is bad but weapon manufacturers find blossoming business during war time. Covid-19 pandemic was too bad and yet pharmaceuticals made huge millions of dollars.
Locally here, even vendors stopped selling clothes or airtime and entered the business of selling herbs and other home remedies like ginger and so forth.
To find local opportunities within the global problems, you need some methodical approach. Below are five things you can do that will systematically help you to pick out opportunities in the bush of problems.
1. Mindset change: Each time there is a problem, you need to shift your mind to start looking at the opportunities inside the problem. The mind is so powerful but it does what you tell it to do. If you tell it to see the problem, it will only see the problem and no opportunity. If you tell it to see opportunities, it will find them. Remember that you are the commander of your mind. Use that privilege to your advantage. Imagine if we do not have the capacity to control our mind. But we do have that capability!
2. Focus on your goals: Problems make us derail and they distract us quickly. Successful people stay focussed on their end goals. What is it that you want to ultimately achieve? Then ask yourself how within the problem you can still achieve your goal. For the vendor in town, his goal is not to sell airtime but to make money so that he or she can pay rent, buy food and support his or her family. And so, when Covid-19 came, the vendor focussed on his or her goal of making money within that problem and took advantage to sell ginger and other home remedies. Vendors kept to the goal but changed approach based on prevailing conditions within the problem.
3. Question everything: When problems occur, avoid jumping to conclusions. Think through things and to do this very well, question everything. Challenge status quo and question and question everything. It is by questioning everything that you will discover hidden opportunities.
4. Take Risks: Many of us fail to sail through problems successfully because of fear of the unknown. We become afraid to take calculated risks. Life will always be full of risks. The key is to manage the risks. We need to weigh the risks and take the risks that we can manage, risks that have benefits not risks that will clearly make us worse off.
5. Networking: When we network, we gain good insights that we never thought about before. We get free ‘consultancy or advice.’ We are all different. Some people have amazing gifts to see opportunities in problems but they may not be action-oriented to implement the great ideas that they share for free. Some people see the opportunities but have no skill or resources or time to pursue those great opportunities. Networking also helps you to learn how they identify the opportunities or indeed how to go about implementing those great ideas.
If you implement the above approach each time you face or see a big problem, you will gradually begin to benefit from or to excel through times of crisis or problems. Keep reviewing each time you complete this approach so that you can learn the lessons to do it better next time.
This way you will perfect your art of seeking opportunities hidden inside global problems. Remember that it all starts with mindset change. Do you have the right mindset to see the right things when problems occur?