Ok, so I admit I did not know what that means until this past weekend while attending a party. Whether it is a chosen way of living, a disguised way of suffering in silence and hope, like living vicariously, the Fear Of Missing Out can feel like a plague for some, as it prevents from acting on and seizing the moment. At the same time, in logistics, the extent of FOMO is big… huge actually: the preparation of an event includes some interesting worst-case scenarios, leading up to considering and building some contingency.

Now, maybe the word “fear” sounds like a bit much in the logistics world, it is certainly never used in writing in any contracts or agreements I have been a signatory authority (or contributor) to. However, the notion of risk is on everybody’s mind, hence the idea of insurance and other “just-in-case” considerations. It has become a very lucrative business over the years, and still tastes like a necessary evil in operations. Enumerating possibilities or potential consequences, shall such situation occur, bases its concept on fear: not so much of missing out at first, rather of missing or failing the client’s expectations.

I recently witnessed this fear first hand with a potential client. Having gone through a similar systematic approach with past clients (scope of work, delivery conditions, errors and omissions, general company liability, among other fun topics), I presented all the insurance coverage options relevant to the project (with confirmation it matched the client’s standards, that is). The operations group was convinced, verbally anyway, that the project was a go. Until the legal counsel reportedly “did not feel comfortable” with the line-up. I asked for some clarification as to where / what was missing to ensure and restore the general comfort level. The answer was icy to my ears: “there is too much risk involved.” No other information was shared.

Beside the fact that the lack of explanation floored me for a minute, I am still puzzled at the amount of fear apparently felt by the legal team (or maybe it was only that person) for one single (potential) contract. Losing the contract is unpleasant, for sure, missing the opportunity even more so. I missed the contract, and so did that potential client: we might as well share, since we are at it. It is not bitterness, just business, with so many safety nets that we tend to lose sight of what the actual projects are, sometimes. That is sad.

Until some reassess their comfort level, if they choose to, others will have landed contracts where time is of the essence and risk-taking part of the deal: little to no fear, except the one that boosts and kicks the adrenaline to create something new, and miss absolutely nothing.

Photo credit © Olivier Borgognon Photography – “More?”