Say what you like about NASCAR beginning their season with their Super Bowl, but the race generally lives up to its “Great American Race” nickname. Yesterday the rain came to Daytona and stopped the race a bit after it had started. In 21012, the race got delayed until Monday, so rain in Florida is not that unusual a circumstance (despite what the Florida Tourism folks would have you believe). Which of course got me thinking about rain delays.
When rain hits a live sporting event, many people are affected. The broadcasters who have to fill the time with interesting programming so they don’t lose their audience. The athletes who have to maintain their mental focus and stay physically loose until they can get back into competition. The facility which has to handle an influx of fans who have nothing to do but eat and drink while they wait and expect the concession stands to be able to handle the increased traffic without a hitch. I was always amazed during my years in sports broadcasting how well the producers and crew had prepared for the rain. Not just the programming they had ready but also how the crew had the proper rain equipment to function without a hitch. Which is the business point.
Every business faces rain delays. Clients who ask you to come to a meeting to do a deal but whose lawyers suddenly have a bunch of new issues. Vendors who didn’t get a shipment of product in from overseas and who, therefore, can’t replenish your inventory. Then there are the literal rain delays that cause construction to be behind schedule. The analyst who is very good but who takes FOREVER to get you critical numbers (better known as a human rain delay).
We can’t control the weather. We can only control our preparation and how we deal with it. Champions are the ones who keep their focus and proceed as if the rain had never happened. Are you ready for that?