Yuppie 911 and Business Execution

I just finished reading an article on MSNBC’s website called, “Tired from a hike?  Rescuers fear Yuppie 911” that seems hilarious on its face but is very serious in its consequences. 

It seems increasing numbers of people who venture in great outdoors are acquiring emergency GPS beacons they can activate to summon emergency help.  When activated, the cavalry literally comes rushing to the hiker’s or mountain climber’s aid, either on foot or via helicopter—whatever it takes.

“Yuppie 911” (as the rescuers call these non-emergency calls) allows people to not take responsibility for the situations they find themselves in.  Running low on water or food, climb a hill that’s a steeper than your energy and experience should allow, the weather changes while you’re hiking, you get tired, etc., all you need do is activate the emergency beacon and “help is on the way.”  Day, night—for novice outdoors people it’s like having 24-hour concierge service. 

Apparently, the beacons don’t allow for 2-way communication—they just activate an emergency signal. People who aren’t acting responsibly are putting rescuers at risk when they put themselves in situations they should have never should have or are calling for rather frivolous, non-life threatening reasons.

Wouldn’t it be great if business leaders had such a service?  Any time they get in the slightest bit over their heads in terms of strategy or business execution, they could simply activate the device and help would be on the way? 

Well, business leaders do have such a service.  I provide it as do thousands of other management consultants.  It’s what we do.  It’s more like “911 for Business.” And, while I don’t give my clients an emergency beacon, I’m more than happy to provide my cell phone number.

Dave Gardner is a management consultant, speaker, author of Mass Customization: An Enterprise-Wide Business Strategy and blogger who resides in Silicon Valley. He helps companies resolve business execution problems that threaten profitability and growth. He can be reached through his website at www.gardnerandassoc.com.

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