On Sunday, an unarmed 20-year-old Black man was shot and killed by a local police officer during a traffic stop outside Minneapolis.
The officer and police chief both called this an error: The officer meant to reach for her taser, but pulled out the gun and fired a single bullet instead. They called this “an accidental discharge.”
After the fact, it’s easy to say, we shouldn’t have done something–that it was a mistake. The problem is some mistakes are minor, and some are life-changing, or in this case, life-extinguishing.
The officer involved resigned from the force and has been charged with manslaughter. The fact that she made a mistake doesn’t change the outcome. Why was she even reaching for a taser anyway? Was that necessary?
Accidents have consequences. A drunk driver who hits a pedestrian likely did this by mistake (we hope!)–but the pedestrian is still dead and the driver will still face manslaughter charges.
The time to consider the consequences of our actions is before we take them–not after. Thinking through potential courses of action in stressful situations allows us to keep our wits about us and act in a way that is less likely to cause a negative result. The reason “Sully” Sullenberger could safely land a damaged plane on the Hudson is because his training included that unlikely scenario.
Shooting first and asking questions later is always a bad idea–whether we’re talking about bullets or business decisions. And that’s no accident.
Contact me to find out how you can get heard above the noise–even in a crisis situation.
Let us help your business rise to the top.