I had the pleasure recently of spending a week in Rome, Italy. Several times I was the passenger in a car travelling around the city. For those of you who have not experienced this, the first thought that crosses your mind is, “I’m going to die!” It makes driving in Vancouver seem like a Sunday drive in the country.
There seems to be no rules, no-one pays attention to lanes on the road as they seem only to indicate direction, not a boundary. Parking is random, it seems there are more motorcycles than cars and they are weaving in front of the cars, centimetres away! Add to this 7 – 10 million tourists annually trying to cross streets and you have what appears to be mayhem!
Yet I never saw an accident, no blaring horns or rude gestures. Two lanes of traffic with two side by side in each lane would approach a single lane underpass and go through as if choreographed to music.
Why does it work? It is no different than a successful business. Managers and Entrepreneurs who are successful are aware of what is happening around them. They have a heightened sense of danger to the business whether it is in the form of competition, changes to supply and demand, culture of organization, or employee relations. Whether you are driving a car in Rome or a business here at home, responsiveness is key. Drive safely!