Personal effectiveness, Problem Solving

Bite the bullet

Yesterday, I discussed how to be proactive in situations in which things are positive or neutral, and you want to make them even better.

Today, I discuss the other side of that coin.

What if things are negative and you want to make them less negative, move them into neutral territory, or – is it possible? – turn them positive?

Being proactive in these situations means you need to answer this question:

What can I do to create a softer landing spot for someone?

Not a softer landing spot for you. Find a way to create softer landing spots for someone else. That is the way to be proactive.


Here is an example.

You get an angry customer call from the office manager at a medical group. They are threatening to cancel all business with your company. You need to tell your boss the bad news that this customer is threatening to sever ties.

Being proactive is NOT JUST telling your boss right away. Being proactive is helping your boss figure out how he’s going to tell HIS boss about this fiasco and how it’s being handled.

Being proactive NOT JUST fixing the office manager’s problem on the spot. Being proactive is offering to send an email or make a call to the physician owner of the practice, explaining the issue and the resolution.


Cover your butt in a negative situation, and you only ever survive that negative situation.

But help others cover their butts in a negative situation, and you are a hero.

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