In the heady days of my early career, I had a string of successes. Unfortunately, this gave me an exaggerated sense of my capabilities:  “I am the smartest person in the room!” 

This illusion came to a screeching halt when a major economic downturn arrived. Suddenly, some of my greatest successes unraveled and turned into monumental failures.

After the shock wore off, I began to ponder: “If I’m so smart, how did I end up in THIS situation?”

The answer was simple. I wasn’t Thinking Ahead. I had never considered worst-case scenarios or how to prepare for them. The question, “What will I do if there is an economic downturn?” never entered my mind.

I was woefully unprepared.

Shame on me. I was a Boy Scout and our motto was “Be Prepared” and that means that “you are always in a state of readiness in mind and body.” 

When don’t THINK AHEAD, you can’t see what’s coming next. So, sooner or later, you’ll be hit by something unexpected, often bad.

To avoid being blindsided, keep an eye on the future. That’s what the world’s most successful leaders do to spot new opportunities and avoid new dangers.

Thanks for exploring this GEO Leadership Action.

What are your key Takeaways?

I’ll look forward to your comments.

Leland Russell
Founder / CEO
GEO Group Strategic Services