Be Prepared

The scout motto tells us to be prepared. My children’s schools practice fire drills and intruder drills as often as monthly. And first responders practice the “be prepared” philosophy as well. At least Boston’s clearly does. I just read an inspirational article in the Wall Street Journal about the preparedness of their emergency medical teams and the speed with which they were able to save people’s lives. “The efficiency of the rescue reflected careful planning, heroic execution and elements of good fortune.” The article went on to state that “Rescuer reaction was so instantaneous that it appeared to be rehearsed.” It appeared that way because in fact, it was. I know of no better way to be prepared than to rehearse. Thespians do it before the curtain rises, politicians do it before a debate and athletes do it before a game. So why don’t more portfolio and risk managers do it before a market crash?

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