Whenever someone tells me they’re a good driver, I double-check my seat belt, just to make sure I’m strapped in properly.
Because the only good driver is a defensive driver, and believing you’re a good driver is dangerous.
Traffic is an enormously complex set of dynamics and interactions, and no matter how well you drive, you can not possibly account for all the things that happen behind you or around the corner.
And the attitude of ‘I’m a good driver’ plays a trick on your mind, telling you that as long as you are in full conscious control of your vehicle and aware of your field of vision, you’ll be safe.
Until a tree falls over or somebody else’s brakes fail at a crossing. Oops.
The same mechanisms apply to business.
When you think you’ve got it all figured out, it’s all running smoothly, that’s when you’re most at risk.
A competitor might suddenly break through and, as they say in Spain: ‘eat your tortilla’. Oops.
Or Facebook might change their algorithm and from one day to the next you’re all but invisible to your audience. There goes your revenue off the cliff.
Just like in traffic, there’s a million moving parts, all kinds of things that can go wrong, or break, or disappear.
Your best bet for continued growth and success, is to be the defensive driver in your business.
Being on the lookout for threats that can damage what you’ve built.
That way, your subconscious will be on the alert, spotting trends or events before your everyday conscious mind becomes aware of them.
Just like a defensive driver in traffic is safer, a defensive business-driver will make it through the changes and challenges better.
Being confident about your own skills and acuity is good, but never underestimate the influence of that what’s outside your field of vision.