On the Importance of Plateauing

Speaking with leaders in business, sales, and athletics has led to new confidence in understanding the phases of growth, and how we discern one portion of our life’s journey from the next.

Athletic Clip Image       While sitting serenely in the Jacuzzi at the local gym after a winning session of Les Mills Body Pump, I struck up a conversation with one of the usual suspects, a friend I’d never shared the workout with, but had often been in the hot tub at the end. He was on what must have been his third crash diet, failing his way through Atkins, South Beach, Master Cleanse, and what must now be some newer fad.

“I plateaued at 230,” he commented.

“Don’t worry,” I replied. “When I lost my weight, I got stuck at 230, then 210, then 200 before reaching my healthy weight.”

“That’s right,” said my girlfriend, joining us in the Jacuzzi, “your body needs to rest from time to time, just drink more water, add a little more exercise and you’ll see results again.”

This advice is simple, straight-forward and amazingly clear. Consulting for start-up companies in growth mode all the way to enterprise-level standards, I’ve seen many leaders beating themselves up or berating their employees for hitting a flat zone.

These periods aren’t just rests, they are signposts, the milestones along our travels to show us the way upward. Kudos to those losing weight, winning friends &  influencing people!

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Filed under Business History, Leadership Characteristics

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