December 21 2020
By: Terry L. Mathis
My COVID experience has taught me something about where my ideas come from. When I was forced to quarantine myself and lost direct contact with my clients, my ideas for blog topics began to dry up. I realized that many of the ideas I have come from actual situations I encounter and problem solving I am asked to do. I am good at solving problems but not so good at dreaming them up. When the problems quit falling in my lap, I first dug into my memories of past experiences but then had to either make something up or look for ideas outside my industry.
Books are always good for new ideas but so are conversations online. I started to develop whole new channels of ideas to replace the ones I got in the field working for my clients. After this experience I realize, more than ever, that my value to my customers is largely this storehouse of ideas I have collected over the years. When almost any problem is presented, I can dig into my memory of past problems and come up with multiple possible solutions. I now encourage my clients to do the same. When you solve a problem remember how you did it. Start a collection of solutions and see if one of them doesn't fit the next problem you encounter.
Terry Mathis, Founder and retired CEO of ProAct Safety, has served as a consultant and advisor for top organizations the world over. A respected strategist and thought leader, Terry has authored five books, numerous articles, videos and blogs, and is known for his dynamic and engaging presentations. EHS Today has named him one of the '50 People Who Most Influenced EHS' four consecutive times. Business leaders and safety professionals seek Terry's practical insight and unique ability to introduce new perspectives that lead to real change.