are you trying harder than ever

Encouragement For When The Results Are Less Than You Expected

You’re not alone.

So many of the conversations that I’ve had in these first weeks of January are about the results business owners and executives have had in 2016. They describe how hard they worked last year, only to see a decline in business or flat growth, while some describe healthy growth during the first half of the year, followed by disappointing results month after month in the third and fourth quarters.

They are working hard, and they’re working smart. They have clearly identified objectives, sound strategies in place and are executing their action plans very well. I see them in action. But now they’re scratching their heads; unsure why 2016 wasn’t a better year and stressed about how 2017 will pan out.

Can you relate?

Are you experiencing this or something similar and wondering what’s in store for 2017?

As if there isn’t enough uncertainty in the wind, this unpredictability further adds to demand for these executives and their teams – and each of us – to be equipped with leadership and communication strategies for driving and navigating change.

One client described how their leaders and top-level managers are experiencing “change exhaustion”. Not only does this hurt internally, with employee engagement (which is only 35.3% in the U.S.), impeding productivity, and burdening effective teamwork, it also negatively effects customer engagement and bottom-line results.

You can’t control everything.

But you can control enough to triumph over the challenges, be a positive influence on others, take the steps to re-energize, and stay focused on the strategies that will improve your results.

6 Questions to ask and answer now.

Most of my clients are putting a fresh focus on fewer, key strategies. We talk about “narrowing the river and dredging deeper”, as opposed to trying to do too much, which is like navigating a wide river only to see how shallow it is.

So, here are several questions worth wrestling with, to make sure your strategic plan is where it should be and that you’re putting your best energies where they belong.

Let me encourage you to not answer these in a vacuum. Don’t go it alone. Listen carefully to what others are thinking.

1. What should be your attitude about the current challenges and circumstances?

Check yourself. Make sure it’s clear, and positive. If someone came to you and described the very same circumstances you’re experiencing, what would you tell them?

2. What attitudes do others have, and do those perspectives need to change?

Everyone needs to be on the same page, working together and supporting the plan for success. Misguided and/or negative attitudes need to change.

3. What are your key success factors?

Do you know where the growth/success will come from, and how to make it happen? Make sure your strategies address the success factors head-on.

4. What are others doing that’s producing positive results?

Be sure you know what’s working for your competition.

And for those of you in marketing and sales, make certain that your brand/identity has a strong point of differentiation, while being *credible* and *relevant* to all of your audiences, internally and externally.

5. What do you need to discard?

Often we need to take an honest look at what’s not working and do away with it. Remember, less is more.

6. What path requires the greatest amount of courage?

Are you familiar with this wonderful quote…

Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.

W.H. Murray

Scottish mountaineer and writer.

Challenge yourself and those on your team to identify what you should all do.

What other questions are you asking yourself and of your team? I’d be interested to know.

I’ll gladly answer any question you post here or send me.

Lastly, make sure you have a plan; one that is like a living, breathing road map that can and needs to change to respond to the challenges and opportunities in front of you.

My best to you in 2017… Cheers,



These questions come from Rick’s methodology PLAN TO BE YOUR BEST …As You Navigate Change, comprised of leadership and communication strategies.

P.L.A.N. TO BE YOUR B.E.S.T …As You Navigate Change


Live Webinar On How To Lead Yourself and Others Through Change

Strategies You Can Immediately Apply To The Change You Are Navigating

Thursday February 2
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Half-Day Workshop to Create the PLAN TO BE YOUR BEST For The Business, Professional or Personal Change You Are Navigating
Friday February 24
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