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Outsmarting the Carjackers

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When Alan Heuss of Columbus, OH had his car stolen at gunpoint, he assumed the vehicle was lost forever. Then, he realized his cellphone could be used to trap the thieves. A deceptive text message tricked the criminals into revealing their location to the police.

How do you get a carjacker to announce their location? As explained by WBNS TV News, have a friend send a message to your stolen mobile phone announcing you have “hot chicks and drugs”, followed by a request for where to meet. These foolish crooks took the bait, probably thinking they could follow up their original crime with a second score of stolen drugs and perhaps kidnapping. Instead, they were caught red-handed in Huess’ stolen BMW.


© Flickr user M 93

While armed robbers aren’t known for their brilliance, this is not just another story about idiotic criminals. Alan Heuss outsmarted his assailants by thinking creatively in a time of crisis. Although the bad guys had the upper hand, their greed and bravado led them from a successful crime to a stint in prison. An outside-the-box approach saved a car and sent crooks to jail.

The relationship between the law-abiding citizen and the carjackers started out adversarial, but the clever text message fooled the thieves into thinking they were talking with a fellow miscreant. Up until the cops arrived, they probably expected to bring home a bonus haul of narcotics. Although our relationships at work usually aren’t quite as dramatic, we often find ourselves on the opposite end of the spectrum from other stakeholders. We disagree, we argue, and we refuse to compromise. We often need some serious process improvement in order to get anything done.

Thankfully, most organizations are not facing a loaded gun and being forced to hand over valuable property. However, unexpected emergencies do flare up, and we are usually too focused on panic that we rarely pursue non-linear thinking. If you are ready for a fresh approach to workflow which accounts for unusual situations and where no idea is off-limits, reach out to the business process consulting experts at AccelaWork. We help businesses and organizations avoid crisis by working together to understand the realm of likely possibilities to save time and sanity.

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