Ten Secrets to Success Through Adapting

bull horn

Adapting as you go sounds great until you have to do it.

The need to change direction suggests failure or disappointment. Results fell short. Strategies failed. Hard work didn’t work.

One of two things usually happens when you feel you failed. You buckle down and work harder. Or, you throw in the towel, defeated.

Disappointing results make leadership relevant.


Perseverance is dangerous when you’re headed in the wrong direction. But, short-term failure isn’t reason to abandon long-term vision. Adapt as you go if the distant future still calls.

Frustration with frustration is distraction.

Leaders always deal with frustrations and falling short. Tough challenges are what leadership is all about. Rise up; don’t run.

Adapt as you go:

The voice of frustration is a gift wiser than the voice of success. The future is found when you adapt as you go.

  1. Stop fighting the wind; adjust the sail.
  2. Listen to your disappointments. Are they with others, yourself, circumstances, or …? The comfort of blaming lets you off the hook.
  3. Define success.
  4. Evaluate long-term goals. Are they compelling? Do you really want what you thought you wanted? Were you clear up front. Disappointment clarifies better than success.
  5. Clarify what you’re trying to accomplish in the short-term.
  6. Stop irrelevant activities. But, don’t stop everything. Passion finds you when you’re moving.
  7. Align method with outcome. What specifically are you doing to accomplish your goal? It’s surprising how weak those answers can be. Effort often stops at good intentions.
  8. Simplify. Complexity is the enemy of progress. Simplicity is the result of elimination.
  9. Determine who you want to be before choosing what to do. How do next steps and current attitudes reflect who you want to be?
  10. Never let disengaged critics determine your direction or destination. They’re in it for themselves not you or your organization.

What’s important when you’re adapting as you go?

What has frustration taught you?

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