The Race is won or lost in the mountains

It usually consists of 21 stages and covers approximately 3,500 kilometers (2,200 miles). It’s the world’s most grueling bicycle race, The Tour de France. Race observers suggest all winners excel at individual time trials and hill climbing. Bottom line, you can’t win if you can’t endure the demands of climbing mountains.

All leaders face mountains made of urgent needs, personnel issues, financial shortfalls, resistance, misunderstanding, frustration, tiredness, competition, success, and more. However, success requires a unique ability to care about the present crisis and future objectives at the same time, to focus on now and not yet simultaneously.

I’ve read that deer can see in two directions at the same time. They lower their heads looking at grassy snacks and at the same time they scan the distance for predators. That’s why you can’t silently sneak up on deer while they’re eating.

You’re facing challenges that nibble at your focus or gobble up your attention. Truth is, you can’t turn away from them. You shouldn’t turn away. However, if they capture your attention you’ll gradually become like a dog chasing its tail.

The greatest danger in the mountains is distraction, losing sight of personal and organizational mission, vision, and objectives. Distracted leaders “mistake activity for achievement.” (John Wooden)

You avoid distraction with two important questions. Why are we doing what we’re doing? And, what are we really accomplishing? Asking these questions enables leaders to focus on both, now and not yet at the same time.


What is the greatest danger leader’s face during crisis or stress (in the mountains)? How should leaders face the mountains?