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I remember talking to Clive Malunga – of Jenaguru Arts Centre – about fireworks. In Malunga’s event planning experience fireworks are crowd pullers. Despite the spectacular display, Clive, kept referring to fireworks as “bombs” to emphasize the caution required in handling them. I think of this in social and business interactions. Many issues, we are drawn to, can explode with great damage.

Clashes that lead to divorce, personal breakdown, resignation, job loss and self-destructive tendencies are damages that are suffered when a personal or business issue explodes beyond what you can manage. You may need to talk to a professional counselor if you have been through a rough patch.

If I sense an imminent explosion, I think I would run and ask questions later. Unfortunately social or business issues have a way of sucking you in, such that it is difficult to keep a safe distance. The risk itself is usually a sign of a good reward. However you should be cautious. So when you notice these 5 issues know that you are walking into a potential minefield. Ask; Is the reward worth the risk? You wouldn’t want to be like to be a victim like those who got burnt in an explosion when they were trying to siphon petrol from a leaking tanker.

A secret, cheating, high stakes, betrayal and mixing two worlds can explode with great damage

1. A secret. When there is a secret involved things can get very explosive. The more important the information you are trying to contain, the more powerful the explosion. One reason why you would keep a secret is to prevent potential harm. Worse still, when your secret is exposed, suspicion and mistrust will multiply the problem. When you hear the word secret, know that you are setting a bomb. Secrets can explode and damage relationships and reputations. But maybe you should look at the secret code.

2. Cheating. This brings in the risks of keeping a secret. The scale of the explosion depends on who you are cheating and how far they are willing to make you pay. Cheating obviously damages the relationship. In the long run cheating cheapens the game. As a result, when things get bad, not only will structure collapse on you but your reputation is also at stake.

3. A mistake by an important, reputable person or organization. When you you have a winning streak, your defeat stands out like a stain of dirt on a white dress. In fact, your former glory may not outshine one noticeable mistake.

For instance, it’s not much news when Barcelona or Real Madrid are on a winning streak. But the day lose, or even draw, it makes headlines. Imagine when it’s more than a game, like with the corona virus lockdown. While many people can get away with such things as violation of lockdown rules, for people who play high stake games like Dominic Cummings, Neil Ferguson and Catherine Calderwood the repercussions are greater.

This is why attentiveness is key to your work. And, when your own effort is not enough, you need a strong support network.

4. Betrayal – Being betrayed or betraying someone can trigger a massive explosion. Imagine that moment when you are counting on someone to hold things together. The person, all of a sudden, breaks. Before you can find a way to cover the gap, everything bursts into chaos. One damage that can become permanent is accepting and living with failed expectation. On the more obvious side, you may have to fight your Judas. This may mean getting into conflict with a family member, friend or other close person.

5. Mixing two worlds – Diversity is the spice of life. It enables us to trade. But when faced with differences, adaptation becomes a necessity. A process of give and take smoothens the trade. However, when people reach a point of irreconcilable differences conflict may erupt. Such clashes may become explosive. In business, for example, some of the people who work operations have a very different mindset from management. Leadership has to be tactful in their approach. On the other hand employees have to be respectful and mindful of channels and procedures when approching their seniors. This is when the Personal Grooming & Etiquette Course becomes important.

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