Tag Archives | survival

Why Taking The Exit Door Is The Key To Surviving In Fast Changing Times

It was 3 a.m. in my hotel room in New York. The fire alarm shattered the calm. What happened next stays with me vividly, every day. It sums up why so many fail to survive life threatening crises, or survive the change underway in business. Here’s why.

I thought the alarm would stop. It didn’t. All on our floor headed out into the corridor, dazed and scared. Someone screamed. I smelt smoke. The fire escape beckoned. But I stopped. I did not want to go through that door. And that hesitation sums up why so many fail to adapt to the tsunami of change underway in business. It’s summed up in an expression I heard last week. Simple. Powerful. Says it all. Here it is. Read it, embrace it, and survive.

What Happened This Week When They Found A Tumor In My Throat

“Yip- it looks like a cancer,” the specialist sighed, pointing to the video picture of the tumor growing out of my vocal chords.

“Treatable?” I asked, petrified. “Oh yes,” he replied. “But not necessarily curable.” This was last Monday. So began the worst week of my life. Here’s what happened next.

My voice had been getting increasingly hoarse for months. “Acid reflux caused by increasing size of your gut,” the GP had counseled. Then I struggled swallowing. And could only speak in a whisper. So to the specialist I went last Monday. He had the bedside manner of a cobra, found a tumor, speculated cancer, gave zero reassurance.

“I’ll remove it surgically if I can on Wednesday. Then pathology. If cancer, come to the hospital next Tuesday and we’ll advice treatment. If it’s early stage cancer, then likely more surgery and radiation. If spread, then chemotherapy too and a 50/50 survival chance. If spread a lot, then not much we can do.” And that was it. I walked out into the sunlight devastated. So began the five worst days of my life… days underpinned by one terrible thing:

The Magic Ingredient To Why Some Entrepreneurs Succeed, And Others Don’t

I have been in Asia meeting with a raft of independent digital, creative, PR, research, design and activation agencies- businesses built by hardcore entrepreneurs. Every one of these conversations proved to me that it is one simple ingredient that ensures success or failure. We need to learn this lesson if we are to survive in our careers. Here it is.

Actually, I knew the secret before I went traveling with CEO Mike to identify partners right for our Asian growth plans. An outstanding entrepreneur and business leader, David Tudehope, had shared it with me over a hurried lunch in Sydney a week prior. David founded Macquarie Telecom, and with his brother Aidan has built it into a major and resilient force in the Australian telecommunications market.

“David,” I asked. “What has been the secret to your success.” His answer will stay with me always, and has been front of mind as we’ve assessed potential partners in Asia.