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How and what are you thinking?

I just finished an interview for the First Light Show airing nationally on Westwood One next week. We talked about how and why we need to bring manufacturing back to the U.S. creating high wage jobs. Our Region is advantaged because of our proximity to markets, abundant natural gas and natural gas liquids. It was a great opportunity to tell our story to the nation. Shale Crescent USA’s thought leadership made this possible.

Dr. Clay Marsh, West Virginia COVID-19 Czar said something profound this week I haven’t heard anyone in the medical community say directly. “We are entering a new time period of learning to live with the virus.” I might not have the quote exactly but my understanding is, COVID-19 isn’t going away anytime soon even though we are working on vaccines and possible cures. If the virus isn’t going away we need to live our lives in a way that protects us and others as we move to normal activities.

Going back to lockdown isn’t the answer. We may find extended lockdown was deadlier than the virus because of depression, stress, increased suicide, domestic abuse, substance abuse and deaths from other diseases like cancer, high blood pressure and heart disease that went untreated. One doctor said he has only diagnosed about 1/3 of the cancer cases he normally does. Cancer doesn’t take vacations. People chose not to go to the doctor out of fear.

When I had cancer over 30 years ago, my wife pushed me to see a doctor and made the appointment. It was serious enough for me to have surgery the next day. Fortunately, the cancer was found early. My type of cancer spreads quickly. A delay could have been deadly. How many cancer cases have spread into something incurable during COVID-19?

Industries like trucking, healthcare, petrochemicals and others learn to successfully deal with risks every day. Driving to the store, church or the beach is a risk most of us are willing to take. In industry following common sense rules like wearing PPE or seatbelts lowers the risk. Wearing a mask, social distancing and washing our hands does the same for us when dealing with COVID-19. The question isn’t “if” we can get back to business, school or athletics it is, “How can we?” This question assumes we can, will and must.

We know how we can bring manufacturing back to the U.S. I got a new crown from my dentist this week. It was made in the U.S. out of ceramic and zirconium on a 3D printer instead of by hand in China. My dentist said it won’t crack or chip. We are using high tech computerized 3D printing capabilities to make critical healthcare PPE, essential medical equipment, products like COVID-19 tests and parts we are currently getting overseas. Small and medium manufacturing companies in our Region have the ability to change quickly and adopt new technology or change product lines quicker than large companies. This helps to keep current jobs and bring in new manufacturing jobs which are really important now.

Lynnda and I attended Influence 2020 the annual National Speakers Association (NSA) Conference last weekend. It was virtual. NSA is an ethnically and physically diverse association of professional speakers, trainers, coaches, business thought leaders and entertainers. NSA members were hurt by COVID-19 when meetings cancelled. I have a friend with a very successful business who lost 6 months of income in a week when meetings went away.

In addition to the mainstage presentations at Influence, we attended small virtual breakout sessions with the most successful people in the business. These individuals have seven figure businesses.

They also have staffs and overhead a business like mine does not have. One individual lost over $1 Million in business almost immediately when meetings and live events began to cancel. I wanted to see how they were thinking in challenging times. These successful people responded honestly and openly to our questions. Their mindsets were surprisingly consistent. The approach they have to this pandemic is something I believe we can all learn from. Here are some thoughts;

The biggest challenge we have living with COVID-19 is our thinking, Hall of Fame Speaker Willie Jolley told us. “When we change our thinking, we change our life.” The late speaker and radio personality, Earl Nightingale said, “We become what we think about.” Willie added, “Our thinking and attitude are formed by the people we spend time with and the things we read.”

One thing all of these successful people did was to give first without any expectation of receiving anything.

They knew everyone was hurting in some way. They began by calling their customers and offering to help at no charge. Some had weekly Zoom sessions where they brainstormed solutions or just listened.

Successful people are experts and thought leaders in their space. They are trusted advisors who share their expertise. These individuals challenge people to think. They get paid for their ability to think and to go beyond the obvious. They believe certainty is an illusion. They don’t panic in a crisis. They lead.

They know how to refocus and evolve. When the old way is doesn’t work find a new way. Their businesses are growing again. Successful people are;

Positive thinkers

Readers

Givers, who give first without expecting something in return

See opportunity even in a crisis. They believe there is always opportunity if we look.

Don’t blame. They know that is a waste of time.

Experts in their space and thought leaders.

Exceptional communicators

We are each capable of all of these qualities, if we change our thinking and believe we are capable. How are you thinking? Anything is possible.

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Greg Kozera, gkozera@shalecrescentusa.com is the Director of Marketing and Sales for Shale Crescent USA. He is a professional engineer with a Masters in Environmental Engineering who has over 40 years’ experience in the energy industry. Greg is a leadership expert and the author of four books and numerous published articles.

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