Political “CRISES”

Crisis. A word that has been demonized and probably rightly so as it contains 8 concepts or notions spanning opinion, point of view, decision making, criticism, evaluation, trial, risk and opportunity. Its concept is one that ranges from white to black, from the nadir to its zenith. From optimism to pessimism.

It’s a word that even in its simplest sense encompasses characteristics that vary only in their intensity: threat, surprise, the need for immediate action, the need for change.

Exactly how a crisis is handled, in every sense, is the issue at stake in any policy, resulting from the ability, skill, design, aim and style of those who manage it.

It is an amalgamation of the personal quality, endurance, acuteness and vision of those who are responsible for charting policies, implementing, modifying and building them and in the end being evaluated. That is, they are judged as a result of the crisis management that they were responsible for as opinions, points of view, decision making, criticisms, evaluations, trials, risks and opportunities are all an integral part of their daily lives.

The most appropriate way, over time, in which to successfully manage crises in every sense of the word is if a leader takes on the responsibility for it, faces it head on. Possesses the personal belief that he or she will successfully deal with it. This is when his or her focus is directed solely towards the ultimate objective. Without any fear that he or she won’t succeed. Without looking back and losing time spent on decisions made in the past or decisions that should have taken. Without becoming disorientated had events occurred otherwise in the past.

The crisis management leader, that is, every political leader who has assumed that role or  position, has seen the opportunity resulting from any crisis. He or she has already mentally established the desired reality, in other words the opportunity that can arise after the crisis and moves confidently in that direction. With no hesitation or doubts. The confidence that is borne from his or her personal quality is the compass also providing a sense of security for others.

And while the most appropriate crisis management strategy is for the leader to take it upon him/herself, the strategy that is counterintuitive it is to “internalize” that responsibility. If the essence of the concepts pertaining to the word crisis is to “internalize”, this will duly influence a decision maker both as a human being and as a leader in key points of his or her psyche resulting in an inability to actually see the opportunity ahead, avoid fear and ultimately fail in succeeding and achieving the ultimate goal.  

While two concepts in crisis management, namely “facing things head on” and “internalizing” are very close to each other, they are also diametrically opposite to one another in their effectiveness, as is exactly the case with risk vs. opportunity. After all, it’s no coincidence that since antiquity the wise men of most cultures have taught us that every crisis can also be an opportunity as long as we don’t internalize it, rendering it more dangerous than it should be.  

Guided by a sense of responsibility and duty, a commitment to the absolute truth of events, empathy, compassion and personal perseverance, a crisis can be turned into an opportunity, requiring the decision maker to possess a perfect mental, spiritual and physical state, knowledge, expertise and experience.

As Rudyard Kipling, the well-known British short story writer, poet and novelist, once wrote, “we have 40 million reasons for failure, but not a single excuse.” In a crisis, no room exists for excuses but rather an acceptance that any suffering can be turned into lessons learned and opportunities that can be implemented immediately.