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Business Development

No Plan? No Worries. Use the Force.

By David Ackert on January, 14 2016

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David Ackert

star-wars-charactersBy this point, most adults with a child at home (or at heart) have seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens. During one of my favorite scenes, Han Solo asks Finn how he intends to infiltrate the highly fortified enemy base.

Finn: I don’t know. We’ll figure it out. We'll use the Force.
Han: That's not how the Force works!

Han is wrong, of course. It turns out that's exactly how the Force works.

For the two dozen of you who still haven't seen the movie, I won't tell you what happens once our heroes penetrate the Starkiller Base, but there is no question that their determination and a good measure of luck play a part in their ability to get inside.

Now, I'm not endorsing the same cavalier approach to business development. Han is right, you really ought to have a plan if you are going to tackle a challenging endeavor. While it doesn't guarantee results, a plan is tremendously helpful for the following reasons:

  • Strategy: It makes you think through your objectives.
  • Urgency: It provides a timeline.
  • Surety: Without it, you don't really know what your next five moves will be, and you may have to grope your way through. With it, you can better anticipate (and prepare for) the obstacles you are likely to face.
  • Accountability: You tend to take intentions more seriously the moment you formalize and commit them to paper.

But, the lesson we learn from Finn is that you can fully commit to an outcome, even without a plan. You will, as he says, "figure it out." That is important to keep in mind if you suffer from analysis paralysis or any other flavor of procrastination. Better to dive headlong into the breach than wait for the perfect plan or opportunity to present itself. You may not traverse as efficiently or strategically as the meticulous planner, but a little inertia is always better than being inert.

And with any luck, the Force will rise to meet you. (The dark side, of course.)



Authored by David Ackert

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