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How Bullet Proof is Your Back Up Plan?
What Burning Man '23 Teaches Us About Navigating Chaos

Picture this: Tens of thousands of revellers converging on Nevada's Black Rock Desert for the party of a lifetime, only to find themselves mired in what seemed like the world’s most inconvenient spa day—mud, everywhere. But Burning Man 2023 wasn’t just an unforgettable festival; it’s quickly becoming an unexpected masterclass in dealing with chaos, making it impossible to ignore the obvious parallels with crisis management in every high-stakes arena from the battlefield to the boardroom.


When Mother Nature decided to throw a curveball of biblical proportions, turning the scorching desert into a quagmire, organisers and attendees were left with a crucial question: how do you navigate an unforeseen crisis when it rains on your parade—literally? Here's the first pro tip: planning is your best friend; keep it close. Just ask anyone with military training. Whether you’re dealing with a muddy disaster zone or a war-torn battlefield, you better have a Plan B, C, and even D in your pocket.


That said, crisis management isn't just about planning. If you've ever watched a rugby match, you'll notice how athletes adapt their strategies the second the weather changes. Agility is a mindset that allows them to roll with the punches.


In a similar vein, let's consider the boardroom—yes, that corporate jungle where stakes can be as high as in any sport or combat scenario. Companies invest millions in backup servers and business continuity plans for situations just like this. It might not be as dramatic as a sudden rainstorm at a desert festival, but when things go sideways, a rock-solid backup strategy is your lifeline.

Assess, Adapt, Act


The genius lies in how these distinct approaches intersect. Whether you’re a soldier, an athlete, or a business leader, the principles of crisis management gleaned from the muddy turmoil of Burning Man 2023 boil down to three A's: Assess, Adapt, Act. These aren’t just platitudes; they’re the building blocks for navigating any high-stakes situation, making them invaluable, universal lessons.


So, this mud-covered spectacle should provoke some deeper questions: How bulletproof are our backup plans? How well does our teamwork hold up when we're up to our necks in the mud? Are we all swagger and no substance when it comes to handling a real crisis? Keep these questions in mind, because, let's be honest, the next time you're faced with the unpredictable, you'll want to be the one who knows how to turn the mud into gold.

So you're asking, what now? How can the lessons gleaned from Burning Man's muddy spectacle make a meaningful impact on your team? Well, that’s where our hand picked selection of high-impact speakers comes in—experts who've been through the mud (sometimes literally) in the worlds of military, sport, and business. When a crisis looms, the first people you'd want in your corner are those with military expertise. Our speakers can bring insights into contingency planning that's been tested in the most unforgiving environments. They'll show you not just how to plan for crises but how to lead through them, making your team resilient and agile when the unexpected occurs. For those who revel in competition, our athletes can offer a masterclass in how to pivot strategies without losing sight of the ultimate goal. They’ll teach you the essence of agility—how to adapt to new parameters while staying focused, be it an unforeseen rainstorm or a last-minute market fluctuation. Our business leaders aren’t strangers to muddy situations, either. They can guide your team through implementing business continuity plans and backup strategies that are as vital to a corporation as they are to surviving an unexpected downpour in a desert festival. They’ll cover every angle—from data protection to human resources—ensuring that your team knows how to keep the operation running smoothly, no matter what. So, the next time you find your business—or life—upended by unforeseen events, wouldn’t you want the wisdom of people who’ve navigated through chaos and come out stronger? That’s what we offer. Think of it as your essential guide to turning the mud into gold.

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