Using “Prospective Hindsight” To Identify And Mitigate Risks During A Crisis

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In 1657, mathematician Blaise Pascal commented in a letter to his church leaders “I have made this longer than usual because I did not have time to make it shorter.” More than 100 years later, another Frenchman, Napoleon Bonaparte, offered a similar remark to his valet as he prepared to head out for battle. “Dress me slowly,” he said, “I’m in a hurry.” The irony of the quotations makes people smile, but few quibble with their underlying truthfulness. Often, the more in a hurry you are, the more you need to slow down.

Over the past six weeks, businesses across the country have been in a hurry. Sales leaders are rushing to find innovative ways to preserve revenue in the face of a shuttered economy courtesy of COVID-19. Contracts Managers are dusting off terms and conditions they had all but forgotten about prior to the pandemic. HR teams are figuring out how to deal with unplanned furloughs and/or layoffs. And in-house counsel are working nonstop to make sense of an endless stream of new statutes, executive orders, regulations, directives, and guidelines from federal, state, and local officials...

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DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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