Something good actually comes off a crisis. And it’s something surprising for that matter. Sam Cawthorn, shares some inspiring stories about crisis and creativity.
Change of leadership, study after study, shows that opportunity or success derives from a crisis. Those particular moments that when we are in the midst of a crisis, we go into a mode that accesses our greatest creativity and our own thought leadership.
Did you know that there was a 34% rise in Australian millionaires in the midst of the global financial crisis? Did you also know that every single fortune of 500 companies all had major crisis that shook their very own existence? Yet everyone not only bounced back but actually bounced forward. We think differently and discover opportunities when crisis comes.
One place I would like to go some day is the Niagara Falls. Did you know that the Niagara Falls became popular in the mid-1800s and little trouble was happening between the 2 countries between Canada and USA? This is because there was no bridge over the Niagara Falls.
So in 1847, some crazy engineer, his name was Charles Ellet said that he could build a suspension bridge over the falls. It was though initially impossible because it had never ever been done before. If completed, it will be the world’s first working railway suspension bridge.
So after approval, Charles realized that there was one small, yet big problem. He could not get a rope from one side to the other side. Engineers could not cross the falls in a boat, the airplanes were not yet invented at the time, it’s far for a bow and arrow to reach. So, in January 1845, he decided to have a kite flying contest.
Now, get this. Meanwhile, there was a 15-year old boy named Homan Walsh and he absolutely love flying kites. So, in January 1848, Homan Walsh, a 15-year old kid won the award after days of flying a kite through the night and also day. He was awarded US $5 for his efforts and relished in his glory until the day of his death 80 years later.
Charles, then, with that kite line tied another piece of rope, pulled it across, a stronger piece of line and pulled it across and then the first cable and pulled it across. That started the construction of one of the most famous bridges in the world. When we have a crisis or problem, we seem to think completely outside of the box just like Charles did. And our innovation and creativity is unleashed in a way that it really has.
I have a confession. I don’t really like video games and I don’t really like video cameras and I don’t really like iPads. Do you know why? Being a one-handed person, they don’t actually make this for a left-handed at all. Did you know that I have never ever seen a video camera for left handers? I have never ever seen an actual still camera for a left hander either.
Because obviously I only have one hand so I don’t really like them. But my kids love gaming particularly my youngest son. He is just one and a half years old, he could play a video game better than most. He would even play sometimes two or three video games at once. Anyway, his favourite video game is Mario Bros. So, I’ve done a little bit of research about Mario. Super Mario is a platform video game developed by Nintendo in the late 1983 and published for Nintendo in the time of its existence.
In 1983, there was a big two-year crash of console games sales across the world. That was actually when the Atari was created. Many companies became bankrupt during these times. People were not buying games and the industry was actually very close to being dead.
But in 1985, a guy by the name Shigeru Miyamoto who is a Japanese video game designer created Mario Bros. He also created Donkey Kong, The Legend of Zelda and lots of other things. But he couldn’t speak much English or anything like that. But when he was a boy, he was so scared and he hesitated before doing many things at all.
One day, he found himself in front of the cave and he was too scared to go into that cave. Eventually he did go in and through his frustration, he created someone that had the characteristics that he did not have. His imagination and creativity inspired the world’s most popular game ever.
For over 2 decades, Super Mario Bros. has been the best-selling video game of all time before just recently being oust by Wii Sports. So, Super Mario has sold over 40 million copies world-wide and is likely responsible for the initial success of Nintendo at the time of its existence.
Even when we have our own personal crisis, our imagination can create ideas that are beyond our wildest dreams. Just like this guy. You can’t fix the inopportunity so make the most of that crisis moment within your life.
Here’s the challenge. I want you to think about a frustration that you currently have. Do you have it? It doesn’t matter whether or not this frustration is large or small or personal or even business. Just a current frustration.
Now, imagine that this frustration is so annoying that you now have turned it into a crisis. Once it has been now established that it is now a crisis, I want you to start thinking differently. You begin to create ways that actually change that crisis. You actually have two choices. Change it or change the way you think about it.
I’m Sam Cawthorn and let’s not only bounce back but let’s bounce forward.