Crashing your business is probably the last thing you want to think about right now, yeah?
But what if I told you that understanding how to tank your business could actually be your ticket to reaching your goals?
I thought it was crazy at first too, but stay with me…
This exercise is called inverse thinking, and it can be traced all the way back to ancient philosophers.
The idea is that you imagine the worst possible thing you could do in a given scenario, and then do the exact opposite of that.
It helps you clarify exactly how to achieve your desired outcome.
Still not sure about this thought experiment? That’s okay. Let’s walk through it together.
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Pick One Area of Business to (Hypothetically) Crash
This doesn’t need to be overwhelming. Just pick one scenario to get started.
For example, imagine a customer emails you because the necklace they ordered arrived broken. They want to know if it can be fixed or exchanged.
Here are a few ways you could absolutely blow it:
- Don’t respond for weeks.
- When you do finally respond, be rude and unprofessional.
- Tell them you won’t fix it and you won’t offer a refund.
- Ignore any further emails.
- Reach out a month later asking them to recommend your brand to a friend.
What are the chances that customer will be buying from you again?
Inversion: Do the Exact Opposite
That’s a pretty absurd way to treat a customer. It’s not a strategy I would recommend.
But now that you know the worst way to handle the situation, it should be that much easier to identify the best way:
- Respond within 24 hours.
- Be optimistic and friendly.
- Apologize for the inconvenience.
- Provide solutions for their problem.
- Offer them something nice to make up for it.
A customer service scenario like this is pretty cut-and-dry, but this exercise can be applied to any area of your business to help you clarify the best path forward.
Don’t Overthink It
This exercise should not be used as an opportunity to indulge your fears and catastrophize about every little thing that could possibly go wrong.
It should be centered on what you can control – your behavior.
When I first heard of this concept I was like, “uh, no thanks.” But what surprised me the most was it actually made me less anxious about things going wrong.
So what do you think, are you gonna give it a try?
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