Entrepreneurs – What Happens When You Plan Poorly

I have a small parcel of undeveloped land, about 90 acres, in the middle of the Texas Hill Country. It is within easy driving distance of the Eckert James River Bat cave which is one of the largest bat nurseries in the country. During the height of the season, sometime between mid-June and mid-July 4 to 5 million female Mexican Free-tailed bats give birth doubling the population. Seeing them swirl out of the cave like smoke is a sight worth seeing.

Are you prepared for the unexpectedI visited the cave in mid-September with a friend who had never seen the sight before. What I most noted on this visit was that according to the guide there were only about 1 million bats because many had already headed back to Mexico ahead of schedule. This, I was told, was a sure sign of a harsh winter to come. Sitting there in 85 degree weather at 9 p.m. it was hard to believe.

My doubt about an extra cold winter increased as we eased into December with temperatures still in the mid-70s. As I headed out to Salt Lake City for two days of training last Tuesday, I packed lightly. After all I would be returning on Friday, so I didn’t need to take that much with me. Alas, as any good entrepreneur knows you must always prepare for the unexpected. I have failed my entrepreneur test!

As I write this, I am sitting in a hotel room on Sunday in the great state of Utah, waiting, not so patiently for the ice to melt in Dallas so that I can fly home. Each day the airline cancels my flight and assigns me a new one. We have now repeated the process three times. I am reminded of the quote, attributed to many: “Life is what happens to us while we are making other plans.”

The hotel is nice, I have plenty to read, and I am equipped with a laptop and a fast internet connection, but I ran out of my supplements yesterday and clean clothes today. Years ago when I travelled for business regularly, it got to where I could easily distinguish the seasoned business travelers from the newbies and those on vacation. I was, at that time, a member of the seasoned crowd. Alas, my status has clearly slipped!

There are lessons to be learned here, one that the Boy Scouts tried (obviously in vein!) to teach me: Be Prepared. It is a good lesson for any entrepreneur. You never know what is going to happen, when an opportunity is going to present itself or how circumstances are going to rapidly change.

Another that comes to mind is that patience in the face of adversity and acceptance in the face of that which you cannot change will save you a lot of angst and serve to keep your blood pressure down. But perhaps the most important lesson is to heed the advice of bats and follow their lead to warmer climates no matter what the current temperature!

Share your thoughts on this topic in the comment section below.

To find out more about the services we have available to help you find the success you want and deserve go to YourTalentAdvantage.com.

About Gary M. Jordan Ph.D.

Gary M. Jordan, Ph.D. is a premier authority on behavioral theories and assessment construction. He has over 32 years of experience in clinical psychology, behavioral assessment, individual development, and coaching. Gary earned his doctorate in Clinical Psychology from the California School of Professional Psychology – Berkeley, and spent 18 years in private practice where he specialized in helping angry adolescents, couples in conflict, and individuals searching for more meaning and satisfaction in life.
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