“They’re out! “ That’s the news regarding the 12 young boys from Thailand and their soccer coach. It’s taken 18 days and an international effort of individuals and resources to not only discover this group but to guide them out of the cave that has held them captive with flooding monsoon rains.
As I watched the news last night I had to admit to my wife – “I can’t even wrap my mind around what it must be taking to accomplish this task.” I’ve seen no reporting of the amount of resources expended to get these boys out but the financial cost must be astronomical. One Thai Navy SEAL has died in the midst of his efforts to find and save this lost group. That alone feels like a heavy price.
I’m not writing to beat anybody up but I am writing to acknowledge what a unified, “MUST DO” effort does. Once declared – it holds the accomplishment of the vision as necessary at all costs. It might sound insulting to even mention the price paid for the discovery and rescue of these 13 but the fact still remains that it was high – very high.
Imagine if the community and families of Mae Sai had not declared the discovery and return of these young men valuable at all costs. Imagine if they would have said – “Eh – it just feels like too great of an effort. It’s just going to cost too much. We’re not even sure if we will ever really find them. We have so many other needs here already.” I would dare say this lost bunch would have barely made the news in Thailand – much less the world.
Sound horrible? Hard to imagine?
I’m certainly not wanting to take anything away from the need and effort expended in the rescue that just took place. It’s nothing less than remarkable. But significant challenges surround all of us these days – and we don’t even need to go around the world to find them. Most of our communities have caves that are figuratively filling with water right now – and people are in trouble – but there is no international rescue effort now in play. Heck – there may barely be a community effort.
So – lest I be labeled as a bleeding heart right now – let me clarify my purpose. I believe that one big reason more trapped people aren’t getting rescued from the caves of their companies and communities right now is a lack of unified vision. A lack of declaring something as so valuable that we collectively declare a WE WILL!
Sound simple? You know it’s not. There are so many ingredients that have to be worked through in order for a unified vision to grab hold that it can feel insurmountable.
There is the need for clarified values (What is most important? And who decides?)
There is the disagreement around what constitutes a real need (That’s not really a problem.)
There is the conflict around whose responsibility it really is (Who’s going to pay for this?)
There’s the issue of blame (This problem is really their fault – let them fix it.)
There is the politics around whose voice gets heard among the chorus of concerns
So – how is it that in the case of 13 young men lost in a cave in Thailand, all of these challenges were almost instantaneously overcome?
Something to think about.