Two shoe salesmen travel to a rural Indian village to investigate market potential.
The first comes back dejected: “There’s no potential there. Nobody wears shoes.”
The second comes back elated: “There’s so much potential there! No one has shoes!”
Point is, a single business challenge can be looked at in more than one way. When you’re confronted with a challenge, do you see opportunity or disadvantage?
There are those who see the benefits and possibilities in any challenging situation. These are the folks who can find a creative workaround for just about any obstacle.
Of course, you can’t force yourself to see a world of potential customers in a shoeless village. But with practice, you can train yourself to look for opportunity in challenging situations.
For instance, you’re having a hard time finding the right candidate for a hard-to-fill role, and that gives you time to reexamine the way your company is structured. Or your own job search is going slowly, and in the interim, you discover a penchant for a new skill. So you start taking classes.
Whatever your mental obstacle, how can you shift the lens?