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Personally, I love analogies. It is like story telling
on steroids and an appropriately placed image is
like a one-take parable.
Forged in fire
I just love the image on our front cover this month. Personally, I love analogies. It is like story telling on steroids and an appropriately placed image is
like a one-take parable.
An image leaves the whole analogy to the imagination of the viewer, drawing from the past that has shaped his/her /their reality. Do you see a fireman triumphantly exiting a burning building, unscathed and victorious or do you see him leave the scene of adversity or turning his back on the challenge?
Comfort and prosperity have never enriched the world as much as adversity has.Billy Graham
By accepting adversity, we do not necessarily surrender to it, but we simply see it as par for the course and, as Billy Graham says, we use the adversity to enrich the world.
There are numerous writings about how we should use the pandemic crisis to create a better world.
How we should stop and smell the roses while saving the planet at the same time. Unfortunately, we know that is not what will happen. The overwhelming majority of people will do anything in their power to regain what they have lost, with renewed vigour. There might even be a greater disregard for the moral and ethical.
In the image on our cover I see a man who has come to terms with the fact that the danger of fire is part of his daily life. In fact, it is the chosen route of his life. Without fire, he has no mission, no right of existence.
This brings me back to insurance and the very essence of our existence. We are created from adversity, from the need for certainty in chaos and we have been providing that certainty for hundreds of years. Once again, we face uncertainty on a modern day unprecedented scale.
As an industry, we do not have to succumb to this adversity, neither do we need to surrender to the path of least resistance. Whatever the outcome, we need to be able to say that firstly, we held up our side of the bargain and secondly, we leveraged this adversity to enrich the world. As with the image referred to above, it is up to each leader and each individual to determine what her/ his side of the bargain is and how he/she will leverage the adversity.
This is unavoidable and the consequences of our decisions now, individually, as companies and as an industry collective, will be with us for many years to come.
We are faced with not just an unprecedented global crisis; we are also faced with an unprecedented opportunity to determine and live our true purpose. In the case of the individual, you decide what that is.