Especially in hard times, you may be tempted to play it safe. You've invested emotional capital in a job through your hard work and duck for cover, unhappy. Your energy then gets sapped, and so does your confidence.
Maybe you've been following recent events about NBC Tonight Show host Conan O'Brien. About ten days ago, O'Brien issued a statement to the effect that he would not host the Tonight Show after Jay Leno, if the show got pushed back to a new, later hour of 12:05AM, by the US TV network.
From the statement:
we were never given that chance. After only seven months, with my “Tonight Show” in its infancy, NBC has decided to react to their terrible difficulties in prime time by making a change in their long-established late night schedule.
The statement and news unleashed a wave of support online. Alas, the network's decision has remained firm. So O'Brien and NBC reached an agreement and Conan O'Brien final show where he will say goodbye to his viewers will be syndicated tonight.
He was right to refuse being pushed back. It would have been a guaranteed formula for failure. Better to leave, regroup, be himself. He's played this very well.
Be yourself -- act like every day on the job is your last day.
For communicators -- how do you defend and rescue the reputation of a brand, NBC, caught in the cross fire of a controversy between two such popular figures like Leno and O'Brien? Plenty of drama was generated by the two comedians in the last week or so.