How entrepreneurs can cultivate resilience to navigate chaos – Corinne Hancock Scott

Unexpected twists and turns are part of having a business. So, joining us in the latest episode of The Small Business Show is Corinne Hancock Scott, serial entrepreneur and Keynote speaker. Scott will discuss how entrepreneurs can thrive in chaos. 

As a cultural anthropologist, she primarily focuses on conflict resolution in crisis management. She spent the majority of her career as an international aid and development worker. She mentions how she has worked in some of the most chaotic areas around the globe. But now, she helps leaders and teams thrive in chaos. 

Key Takeaways:

1. Chaos can mean different things to different people depending on how they relate to the term. However, by definition, chaos refers to a state of confusion or disorder marked by a lack of organization or order. Scott believes that many people confuse their busy lives with chaos. She argues that it is more about how we react to unexpected events that determine our experience of chaos. If entrepreneurs can develop a positive relationship with chaos, they can begin to navigate through it more effectively. 

2. Scott distinguishes between a crisis and chaos. While a crisis often leads to quick action, chaos is the confusion and disorder that arises when unexpected events continue to occur, as they inevitably do in new and existing businesses.

3. When challenges arise, Scott helps small companies respond more effectively by following a few simple steps.

      • If you notice, the bigger the crisis, the less we get stuck in the chaos. “We tend to move very quickly to a solution,” notes Scott. 
      • But when we look at the smaller mishaps like someone showing up late, missing an order, or something that has a devastating effect on that moment, it allows us a moment to feel those emotions of the moment. Scott encourages entrepreneurs to “embrace the suck of it.” Then that’s when you can decide the goals you aim to accomplish. 
      • Pull everything into the right here, right now. Break the disarray down to the more microsized missions you can achieve now based on the available resources. 

4. Consider chaos as an opportunity for growth, as it teaches valuable lessons and creates new possibilities. History shows that many great achievements have been accomplished by persevering through difficult times. Therefore, entrepreneurs should view chaos as a way to test and improve their resilience.

5. As an entrepreneur, it’s crucial to develop the habit of acknowledging situations that are beyond their control, analyzing their emotional state, and taking note of their default responses. Scott refers to this process as the “ABCs,” where individuals either try to avoid the issue, blame others, or complain about it. However, these reactions don’t hold much value when faced with chaos or uncertainty.

"Unfortunately, you'll never be chaos proof, but you can be chaos ready." – Corinne Hancock Scott

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