One morning last summer, my husband and I ventured out on a long weekend trip. I entered our destination into our GPS, and it displayed our route. After two hours of following its voice commands, we missed our turn onto a major highway. The GPS “lady” said “Recalculating”. Our choices were to either turn around and get back to the highway or take a chance on the new route. With spare time and an adventurous spirit, we picked the latter. Our new route took us along a remote Kentucky backroad through scenic hills and small farms. Our accidental change of plans was rewarded with beautiful scenery that we otherwise would have missed. Our little adventure spurred a thought about plans. How many times have you gotten upset, in either your business or personal life, when you “missed your turn” or had plans go awry? These “wrong turns” are inevitable, but sometimes they can be disguised opportunities, just like our country road detour.
Just as our GPS set our original direction, your strategy sets the direction and establishes priorities for your company. But no plan is perfect, and detours happen to all of us. Is there some value for you in the detour? Should you try it or try to get back to your original course? Here’s how to decide (see the summary table at the end):
Every detour contains lessons. Sometimes a wrong turn is a wrong turn and you need to correct course. Sometimes, though, a wrong turn is really a disguised “right” turn. How are open are you to recognizing these opportunities when they present themselves?
Consider these factors when you need to make a decision about your plan:
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