Crisis is the mother of invention.


The Thai soccer team made it safely out of the cave. The heroism displayed by expert dive teams from around the world marked a poignant moment of global coming-togetherness.

As I followed the rescue efforts, I was reminded that, historically, crisis and emergencies put innovation into overdrive out of acute necessity. The number of items we still use today that were invented during WWII alone, is staggering.

Elon Musk even got involved in Thailand by offering up a retrofitted SpaceX rocket to be used as a mini-submarine rescue vessel. Although Musk’s invention proved not to be a viable option this time, how amazing was it to watch someone move a possible solution from ideation to execution in just a matter of days when put under extreme pressure to deliver?

True emergencies inspire creative thinking of the highest order. Of course, the cave rescue is an ultimate example of crisis problem solving, but I challenge you to apply this motivation to your own entrepreneurial efforts. Curveballs come up, all the time. Count on it.

How are you going to react, and what are you going to do, to solve your next obstacle?

First: Make a plan, not the plan. Sitting on your hands and hoping somebody else will get you out of a mess is not a path forward. Take control of your situation by devising a creative solution yourself.

Second: Engineer a backup plan if your first idea doesn’t work. After all, curveballs are the norm, not the exception. But having a plan AND a back-up plan will better prepare you for a shifting landscape.

Third: Keep going. Your first idea might not be successful. Your second or third ideas might not be successful. Don’t give up. I love Thomas Oppong’sMedium post about the importance of producing work, even if it isn’t perfect. Not everything you do is going to be brilliant, but the more ideas you try, the more likely you are to discover a gem among the rocks.

I will carry the spirit of the cave rescue into my own entrepreneurial efforts, and I want you to do the same. I hope that your decision making is never one of life or death, but I know that the courage and unrelenting willpower of those involved in recent headlines will encourage all of us to try a little harder to resolve issues before giving up.

We are more capable of overcoming crises, real or perceived, if we are hyper-motivated to unlock a solution. Find your motivation and go!