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I am currently the VP of Marketing at a small startup company. Saying that the company lives in a constant state of chaos would be an understatement. Every day holds a new challenge, and it is hard to get ahead of the game. It is hard to be proactive and not just reactive.

We have recently placed a high priority on establishing processes and order into our day to day activities. The thought is to position ourselves to be proactive instead of reactive. Playing catch up can suck, and not being prepared for a situation or opportunity because you always feel like you have 10 things to accomplish in 1 hour can really be tough.

“Playing catch up can suck, and not being prepared for a situation or opportunity because you always feel like you have 10 things to accomplish in 1 hour can really be tough.”

I was unloading a shipment with our CEO yesterday and I realized something very important. The point of being proactive is not so that you never have to be reactive. Being reactive is the name of the game! It is the Hustle! It is the game winning 3 point shot. The whole point of being prepared and proactive is so that you can be prepared to be reactive and capitalize on opportunities.

“Being reactive is the name of the game! It is the Hustle! It is the game winning 3 point shot. The whole point of being prepared and proactive is so that you can be prepared to be reactive and capitalize on opportunities.”

As I was talking to my CEO, I brought up Floyd “Money” Mayweather. Floyd has made a living on being a counter puncher. He has made millions being reactive. He rarely is the aggressor – at least not until he has his opponent rattled. At that point, he goes in for the kill. Floyd has become one of the greatest fighters of all time by preparing himself to be the best counter puncher in the world. Take a look at this video that explains Floyd’s technique:

The most successful companies position themselves well to counter punch. They prepare to be nimble. They dont set up processes so that they will never have to be nimble – they set up processes so that they CAN be nimble. Floyd practices delivering the counter punch thousands of times in training so that he will be prepared to be nimble in the ring. He simulates variables so that he can be reactionary.

“The most successful companies position themselves well to counter punch. They prepare to be nimble. They don’t set up processes so that they will never have to be nimble – they set up processes so that they CAN be nimble.”

In business, particularly with startups, don’t be proactive so that you never have to be reactionary. Be proactive so that you CAN be reactionary. Being reactionary is where the magic is made. Being opportunistic is where startups make the transition into being companies.

Jarod Dickson

www.mradio.wordpress.com

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