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The Impact of A Solution-Oriented Approach

The Clifton Review 


The Clifton Review is a tri-weekly column that examines the question of the Clifton project along with the evolution of the war between two billionaires. We covered the start of this war with articles describing the battle over easement rights, the mysterious burning of a home, the blocks to rebuilding, and countless questionable court filings.

While the 2018 series salutes fashion mogul Peter Nygård’s Golden Jubilee detailing his rags to riches story, his incredible business success over these past fifty years and an inside look at how he did it, The Clifton Review will also continue to address current affairs as they relate to the good of The Bahamas.


The Impact of A Solution-Oriented Approach

By P.J. Malone

If something is impossible to do, it’s impossible to do, right?

The idea of a solution-oriented approach to something probably doesn’t make a lot of sense to some people. Yet, an insistence on a solution to any problem can bring about the desired result. Somehow one can find a way to make something work.

However, it first requires a belief that nothing is impossible to achieve. The single most influential factor in fashion mogul Peter Nygård’s exponential business success is his belief that nothing is impossible, which produced a solution-oriented approach to his business.

The significance of a solution-oriented approach is illustrated in the Apollo 13 space mission challenges, as previously referenced. It’s a situation that business consultants have used as a great storytelling example to demonstrate an important lesson for businesses.

Most people are already familiar with the unforgettable line from the Apollo 13 mission: “Houston, we have a problem.”

When the astronauts in the Apollo 13 mission got in trouble while in Space — with challenges that would have prevented them from returning to earth alive — the Chief of the Apollo 13 Mission on the ground at NASA had one goal: “Bring the Apollo 13 astronauts home.” 

This is the goal he communicated over and over to the engineering team on the ground working on the problems faced by Apollo 13 in space. No matter how many times the engineers came to him to explain what problems they faced trying to find a solution, he kept sending them away and reminding them of the goal — bring the astronauts home.

He told them that he didn’t want to hear what couldn’t work. He wanted to hear what would work to bring the astronauts home. In other words, he kept directing them to seek solutions — to focus on the resolution and not on the challenges.

There is no doubt that the Apollo 13 mission would have been doomed with the American people having to mourn the deaths of their astronauts if the team on the ground was not able to come up with a workable solution for the Apollo 13 astronauts to return to earth safely.

While Peter Nygård’s business missions are not as dire, his approach to every objective and goal was and is to ‘bring the astronauts home’. No matter what he wants to achieve, he works with the premise that without a shadow of a doubt nothing is impossible. 

But Peter Nygård didn’t need this lesson from the Apollo 13 mission to know that nothing is impossible. Of course nothing is impossible. From the age of three until he left his grandparent’s farm, he watched his Grampa do the impossible every day.

Whenever Peter Nygård encountered a challenge in his business and wanted to do things that had never been done before, he simply got to work and found a way to make it happen.

The 2008 recession was no exception. Why should he join the recession? Others would have told him, ‘it’s impossible to avoid’. But challenging Peter Nygård is exactly what causes him to resolve to prove everyone wrong. So, he dug in, allowed his ‘sisu’ drive to take over, and found a way to avoid the recession.

Peter Nygård ignored the economists and got to work with a solution-oriented approach. Believing that nothing is impossible, he strategised to find a way to avoid the recession, despite the fact that his business was dependent on others, who no doubt, would also be experiencing the recession.

Instead of a recession, his solution-oriented approach resulted in a 25% increase in profits for Nygard—thus, the impact a solution-oriented approach can have on a business.

Stay tuned for more analyses of the principles at work in Peter Nygard’s business success.

Written by Jones Bahamas

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