“The worst thing to do in a time of chaos is add to it.”
I found this quote from an article from Ogilvy on British brands reacting to the Brexit vote a few years ago. While Brexit isn’t a good corollary for what is happening now, I was reminded by this quote that we will periodically have to navigate times of extreme uncertainty.
Every period of uncertainty is unique. But I find it helpful to remember that this too shall pass.
Elsewhere in the Ogilvy piece, I found this quote:
“With government sending only messages of confusion, brands can aid people in finding stability … Be a beacon of certainty within the world of the uncertain.”
I like thinking of brands during uncertain times as a “beacon of certainty within the world of the uncertain.”
I also found some useful perspective in this recent HBR article:
“Strategic uncertainty can feel like slogging through mud. Leaders avoid investments. Decisions are deferred. Resources are frozen. Fear, uncertainty, and doubt drive bad behavior and personal agendas. Even so, companies often succeed or fail based on their managers’ ability to move the organization forward precisely at times when the path ahead is hazy.”
I lived in London during the the aftermath of the 2008 Financial crisis, leading a brand team and trying to keep my sanity during the whipsaw predictions of what was going to happen next.
Here are a couple cartoons I drew during that time of uncertainty: