Do things like snow have to cripple our productivity?

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After the snow, it seems reasonable to send out the plows and clear the streets.

Keep a good staff close-at-hand, get the equipment ready, and then deploy them all. Within hours, folks will be able to get back to what they are used to doing – working, attending to their daily tasks, moving about.

But it’s not a simple solution. Although it’s the standard solution, the plows also cause a lot of damage. Afterwards, the streets are riddled with new potholes, and those won’t even be patched until the following Spring. It could be another few years before the potholes are more permanently repaired with new paving. And if you live in a city like New York, it could all take much longer than that – it’s just not possible to efficiently make the repairs without also crippling the roads that folks depend on so much.

There probably isn’t a better answer to the problem of the cycle of snow and plows and pothole repairs. But there are certainly different solutions. One option might be to reduce the dependence on an absolute necessity to get everything up and running again as quickly as possible, so that the harsh solution of the plows can be replaced with something that is a little less damaging.

But that requires a sea-change, since folks tend to assume that up and running is most important, and also tend to assume that when a process or daily activity is modified in a big way then that equates to NOT being up and running.

Maybe the snow isn’t as crippling as we assume. Maybe we are at a point where life can go on just as productively with the snow as it does normally.

Maybe that requires some big changes in thinking, but the rewards of the change in thinking can be even greater.