Streamline - Spring 2013 - (Page 23)
Proactive vs. Reactive
BY FRANK NADEAU,
ARE YOU PROACTIVE or reactive? Do you plan and follow through your days or wait until some
event makes up your day’s tasks for you? Proactive thinking and acting indicates a “take-charge”
mentality while reactive indicates a “roll with the punches” attitude.
Many people are drowned every year on the
beaches as a result of rip-tides. These occur when
a sandbar opens up, waves pass over the bar and
the water rushes back out through the cut. A
reactive person tries to swim against the current and is pushed further away from the beach.
A proactive person, seeing the futility of this,
swims across the rip and then is able to swim in
the calmer water alongside the rip.
If we are reactive, is this the way we’ll always
be? I don’t think it has to be. However, making
the change can be a long, hard task, similar in
ways to breaking a habit like biting our fingernails or smoking. Anyone who has successfully
accomplished either of these can attest to that.
Becoming proactive means taking charge of our
lives, not letting situations and others take charge.
How does all of the previous relate to water
and wastewater operations? Proper maintenance of our systems requires both Corrective
(Reactive) and Preventive (Proactive) actions.
When something fails, it has to be fixed. We
can’t wait until Monday morning to fix a large
leak that is draining the storage tank in a couple
of hours. We have to react to that situation and
get it fixed. But what if there had been a small
leak there for some time and we just didn’t think
we needed to bother with that little problem.
Proactive thinking and acting would have tried to
prevent a larger situation from occurring. Many
times we know a problem is developing but we
don’t take action or are caught up in our routines
so we put off doing what is necessary to prevent
it from becoming a catastrophe.
Proactive thinking and acting is a learned
skill and the only difference in being proactive
from being reactive is reacting before it becomes
that catastrophe. Reacting when we see the small
leak is being proactive. Have you ever observed
a small leak get smaller or does it always grow
until it’s leaking more than you’re pumping?
Proactive thinking is the first step in Asset
Management. Starting to plan how we are going
to keep our system up and running in these days
of financial crisis will allow us to build budgets
which ensure sufficient funding, make small rate
increases to increase revenue, develop methods
of maintenance that reduce costs, reduce labor
and build surpluses. This is the only way we are
going to be able to continue providing the services with which our municipalities and service
authorities are charged.
The methods of former years – in which councilmen and directors campaigned to not raise rates,
considering pipe in the ground as “out of sight and
out of mind,” and using the “work it until it dies”
maintenance method – will not continue to be
effective. We must learn how to be proactive, to
plan our maintenance and replacement policies so
that when breakdowns or upgrades happen, there
are funds to pay the bills.
TANK & TOWER
MAINTENANCE CO., INC.
We have a crew in
New & Used
In Service Cleaning
ROV inspections can be viewed on
TV console during inspection & DVD
provided. All inspections include
bound reports, recommendations and
270-826-9000 Ext. 330
w w w . v r w a4/15/11
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Streamline - Spring 2013
From the President
From the Executive Director
Water and Wastewater Certifi cation Exam Test Taking Tips
Past 25 Years of VRWA
Proactive vs. Reactive
Asset Management and Drought Management
Is the Tank Contaminating the Water?
Committed to the Future of Rural Communities
Standard Operating Procedure For Leak Detection Using the Pressure Hold Method
The Virginia RATES Program is at Your Service
Ergs, Joules and Other Stuff
VRWA 25th Annual Exposition Agenda
Do You Know What Your VRWA Benefi ts Are?
Throwing My Loop
Welcoming New Members
Board Of Directors
Index To Advertisers/Ad.com
Streamline - Spring 2013