Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Redefine Yourself to Face Uncertainty

By Kris O'Shea

Two articles came out today that hit home for me. One article discussed how Houston (I grew up there) is recession-proofing its economy with...not oil, but with...wait for'll never guess...wind power!

If Houston, the oil capitol of Texas, is redefining itself, then we all need to take notice. I lived there in the 80s, when the city went belly-up and when oil went bust--it was not pretty.

Luckily for Houston, there are some visionaries who are thinking ahead to the next potential bust. The wind power move surprised me, but think of all the energy they could generate during a hurricane! Next thing you know they'll find a way to power the world with tasty margaritas.

The other article was about my current hometown of Denver.
Denver also faced tough times in the 80s during the energy bust. The mayor at that time, Federico Pena, set a bold vision for Denver as a world class city with a new international airport and thriving cultural, residential and business communities. Over the past 20 years this vision has been expanded and implemented by Mayors Wellington Webb and John Hickenlooper, thus propelling Denver into the national spotlight as a highly desirable place to visit, live, do business, and host a convention (can you say "DNC?").

The lesson? Both of these cities could have shrunk during times of challenge. Instead, they chose to use the situations as an opportunity to redefine think bigger than they had before. This reinvention is propelling them to weather uncertainty from a position of strength. If we limit ourselves to how we were defined yesterday, we may find that yesterday will have been the best time of our lives.

Tasty margarita, anyone?

The O'Shea Report offers change speakers, corporate comedy, business humor, and motivational humor keynotes for meetings and conventions. To learn more visit

1 comment:

Nora Johnson said...

This was enjoyable, inspiring and true. Thank you, Tim and Kris.