InTents June/July 2020 - 37

4. Fight fear. O'Hara says that fear
is the sister of uncertainty. "Here's the
reality of it. You are either going to fail
or you are not. It's one of two outcomes.
Either way, worrying about it doesn't
solve it. The outcome is going to be the
same," he says. "Having that fear stops
you from taking the risks you need to take
to get through the situation."
5. Stay in frequent communication
with your stakeholders. Singer noted
that while we are physically distancing,
we need to be socially tightening-communicating with employees, customers
and supply chain vendors. Even commenting on and sharing the social media posts of others helps. "People will
remember who helped share their information rather than people who just said,
'look at me,'" Singer says.
O'Hara shared a story about getting on
the road and visiting customers during
the Great Recession. "We said, 'Look, we
know you don't have any business right
now, we just wanted to come in and say
hello and share some time with you.'
They appreciated the company, and we
were able to capitalize on that. When the
market started coming back, we were a
couple of years ahead of our competition.
Look around for advantages like that."
6. Take advantage of downtime to
make your business stronger. What
can you do now that you don't have time
to do when your business is operating
at full throttle? O'Hara says his company
is spending this time upgrading its
marketing, presentations and proposal
formats and taking advantage of
educational opportunities.
Singer has committed to "talking
to one smart person every day" to
share ideas. "Most of these people are
acquaintances or friends. And I'm asking
them what's going on, what do they see?
I've tried to share ideas, if they're seeking
input. But my last question to everybody
is, What do you think I should do?"

7. Develop your "resilience badge."
"It's individual for everybody," O'Hara
says. "For me, it's knowing that I'm going
to have a solution, no matter what that
solution is. It's being persistent enough to
get there. It's making sure that the people
around you believe in you from the time
before the crisis and now. It's how you
communicate with your stakeholders. It
really shows people that they can believe
in you, and if people believe in you, good
things will happen.
"You also have to have a fair amount
of chutzpah. You've got to be able to look
at some bad situations and say, 'I'm not
backing down from this. Failure is not
an option. We're going to have to ¤Éind a
way to get through this.' That just comes
from within, and that's what drives me.
Knowing that I can stand up to anything."

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InTents June/July 2020

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