When people ask me how I am doing, I always have the same answer. Excellent! I have been saying that already as a student in The Netherlands: Uitmuntend! Later I took ‘it’ with me to Latin America: Excelente! Still today in the USA, the answer is always the same. ‘Excellent’. It creates a feeling of the opposite of a problem.
Recently a CFO of a large Dutch company explained to me what he considered one of his main tasks: To protect people in the company from bull-[censored] getting injected into the organization. He was referring to the amount of requests or obligations by various institutions, including governments, that are in fact not urgent, not necessary or that do not add any value.
No solutions to no problems
Problems can be created by one institution, such as a government, and the solutions can be provided by others, such as law firms and consultants. However, if solutions are a business, there might be an incentive by some to embrace or create problems. It might be better not to offer solutions, but just represent ‘no problems’.
If the previous paragraph sounds too cryptic, let me try an example: Instead of telling a company in the USA that doing business in Mexico is a problem, I would say that it really isn’t. There is just a fast track to success by engaging people with experience and skills that do not manage based on assumptions. Assumptions is a major problem creator.
The Opposite of a Problem
The start of any business relationship, especially in international business and particularly with contracted parties, should be problem-free and should include protection against overwhelming nonsense getting into an organization. No problems. Not even solutions. Just a fact track. Excellent. Excelente. Uitmuntend. The opposite of problems.