Global February 5, 2013 Last updated September 18th, 2018 3,311 Reads share

What The Year Of The Snake Could Predict: 8 Best Practice Tips For Business

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Some flinch. Some scream. Some even run away when meeting a snake. Yet in China, they say a snake in the house is a good omen as it means your family will not starve. Why? As we welcome the Year of the Water Snake in the Far East this February 10th, it might be a good time for those of us in the West to slough off some cultural biases regarding the creature. I’ll help you unravel the insights hidden in this Astrological creature.

Warm to the touch and quite timid in real life; the snake is known as keen and cunning, intelligent and wise in Chinese lore. You may agree or disagree. Either way have fun with this fresh look at the year ahead based on the Far Eastern attributes of the Snake.  See if it fits with your plans!

Guido Mocafico’s Magnificent Rectangular Serpents taken from

Best Practice Tips from the Year of the Snake

In 2013; the year of the calm Water Snake could be a welcome cooling antidote to the the fiery tumultuous, game-changing Year of the Dragon, we have all just endured.

A welcome Yin to last year’s Yang.

It arrives at the time when the whole world awaits eagerly for the first shoots of growth. How will you prepare your business for this next phase?

Here’s my take on what the Year of the Snake suggests:

Snake Smarts 1

The year of the Dragon in your part of the world may have shook things up, led to lots of new ventures or resulted in the creative destruction of your old status quo.

  • The year of the Snake suggests its a good time for some remedial steady progress – engaging in some R&D or investing in innovation and technology in a deliberate yet forward looking manner.
  • It suggests lasting solutions not quick fixes this year.

Snake Smarts 2

It is said those born in the year of the Snake can be influential and insightful. The deliberate and careful snake thinks awhile before jumping into things.

  • A reminder to businesses to assess carefully the events of 2012 especially if you believe them to be game changing.
  • Apply some planning to future ventures this year.
  • It is said this is a good year for carrying out detailed, logical work and risk assessment.

It is also the Year of the Black  Snake – implying inscrutable and uncharted waters. all the more reason to tread carefully

Snake Smarts 3

The Water Snake can also be a vibrant influence.

  • The cooling water element implies its a good time for education, training and up-skilling as we try to emerge from the last few years of immense change and re-position in this new landscape.
  • We may have let some people go and consolidated our costs last year – now we have to use what we have left in the most effective way possible using innovation, focus and discipline.
  • Snakes shed off adversity like old skin and can be self reliant in this respect.

Snake Smarts 4

Snakes don’t attack unless disturbed or hungry. The Snake is unassuming, efficient and low key

  • Down to the bone, we need to avoid extemporaneous spending or extravagant behaviour. Diving right into decisions without weighing consequences, can cause financial ruin when you have few resources to spare. The worst nightmare for any business this year would be jumping head first into a financial deal or a buying spree.
  • It’s time for streamlining – look at maximising what you already have, intelligently.

Snake Smarts 5

How DO you maximise scarce resources? Snakes can be sneaky, remember the term “snake in the grass”? Not always negative thing in my books. They look for loopholes and find routes that are not clearly visible.

  • You should be re-imagining your marketing campaigns with some guerrilla low cost behaviour,
  • checking your finances for hidden sustainable ways to save,
  • collaborate with people you may not have considered in the past or
  • exploit new uses for your product or services offering.

Snake Smarts 6

Snakes have a forked tongue and that can be seen as threatening. They are considered introspective and intellectual yet are good communicators. A combination of qualities that could make one misunderstood and isolated in terms of personal relationships.

  • Watch your words, be expedient in what you say and communicate with clarity in the year ahead.
  • 2013 should be about rebuilding and this extends to relationships that need to be fostered and cultivated like your stakeholders, partners and alliances who have stood by you in the challenging times.

Snake Smarts 7

Snakes are considered refined, cultured and elegant. Perhaps a case of understanding now more than ever, that Less is really more.  That its worth aiming for a higher mutual good when doing business.

  • Having less is the mother of invention, the jump start to sustainable design.
  • Its a call for a more socially intelligent way of doing business that seeks to foster communities and safeguard the environment whilst also generating profit.

Snake Smarts 8

Last but not least Snakes are quite sexy creatures because they are mysterious and sometimes deadly. They don’t strike often but when they do its decisive and wastes no time.

  • Make sure your business plan this year has reserves and contingencies that allow you to strike at opportune moments.
  • As far as your customers are concerned – make sure they keep coming back for more as you tease them with a better offering.

And as for being sexy….I’ll let you figure that one out.

Do any of these pointers resonate with you or do you have a different interpretation of the year of the Snake? I am curious to find out as this year unfolds.

Gong Xi Fa Chai! Gung Hay Fat Choy!

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Elish Bul-Godley

Elish Bul-Godley

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