No Panacea, Retrogression before Progression – by Dave Neal

When I played football in college, my coach wanted me to get stronger. I was a smallish fleet footed wide receiver and cornerback, thus he introduced me to the weight room!

Reluctant and very skeptical I engaged in in the regime and found after a couple of weeks I couldn’t lift the weight I could when I first started.

I complained to the coach that things were worse and the pain was not worth the effort.

I remember distinctly his response, “son there is simply no gain without pain in any endeavor in life, you will see retrogression before progression, now get you butt into the training room and pay the price for success!”

It seems in today’s world everything needs to be instantaneous, the here and now is all that matters!

I want to look good for the reunion; go on a crash diet, get liposuction, get a tummy tuck, get a brow lift, a shot of Botox, etc.

The annual golf outing is coming up next month; get new clubs, get some lessons to drop 10 strokes off your handicap, get a new outfit, etc.

The owner wants more profits by the end of the next quarter; reduce cost, get new customers, improve productivity, hire some sales people, etc.

Of course in all cases expectations are to be magically accomplished as we speak, with no cost, or pain to the organization.

Am I exaggerating? Are these realistic expectations? Is this a slice of human nature? Does this happen every day in life and businesses?

Unfortunately the answers are no, no, yes, and yes.

If you take a step back and evaluate any changes in life or business that are sustainable and generate “real” results the following is most often true:

  • Long term plan is required
  • Commitment to execute
  • Process to track progress
  • Accountability for all
  • Continuous improvement vs. instant success
  • Reward & recognition of incremental results
  • Retrogression before progression
  • “No gain without pain”

Too many businesses want instant results without paying the price for success. Unrealistic expectations and reliance on quick fix strategies simply don’t work. If you truly want exceptional results, please contact us for a free assessment of how to compete and win in 2020.

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