Some managers are fantastic at fighting crises.
In the face of a demanding deadline, with a huge project is at stake, they don’t break a sweat. They burn the midnight oil, setting an example for their team to follow. They lean into every obstacle and dish out viable solutions. Like escape artists, they salvage a crisis from the jaws of certain disaster in the very nick of time.
Their ability to put out a fire is admirable. However, on working with some of them, you tend to notice a pattern. Their next assignment would also turn into a crisis. And so will the one after that.
Many of these crises could have been averted. Thereby, the crises they were so good at resolving were largely of their own making. It is easy to get stuck in this pattern – of letting a crisis happen and solving it. With time and attention focused on the current crisis, they fail to act in time to stop the next one.
The best way to resolve a crisis is to prevent it from happening in the first place. Alas! Such work is often invisible, overlooked and not amplified.