The Value of a Strategic Pause


I’ve written a number of blogs on staying the course because it’s a topic that consistently surfaces with clients. How do you balance the push for agility and innovation with the fact that you need to give things time to work? Coming from a government agency where the Director rotated every three to four years, I’m well used to this push-and-pull feeling. And, I know the value of pause and assess.

The key to being able to pause and assess is attributed to a number of factors. A short list includes: knowing the desired end state; goal alignment up and down the chain; healthy debate; and playing the long game. A quarterback knows that he wants to get the football over the goal line and doesn’t lose sight of that. The team is there to make it happen. They stop and realign after a play, whether it failed or succeeded. It’s a united effort in which everyone has a part. They keep their eye on the endgame and use the strategic pauses to reassess and move forward.

If you were to take the football metaphor and apply it to your office environment, what would show up? Is everyone moving together towards the same goal? Is everyone an active player on and off the field? Are there strategic pauses to assess what is working and what isn’t? If you answer ‘no’ to any of these, it’s a starting point to figure out where you can factor in strategic pauses and improve your return on investment (ROI). Speaking from personal experience, I can guarantee that constantly changing course is not the way to achieve what is needed for the organization.

This Week: I recently read an article referring to our current world state as the “great pause.” This is true in some aspects of our lives. We are being given time to pause and assess many of the things we believe and do. Take some time and actually do that. What is your personal vision? How are you aligned with that vision? How do your words and actions reflect your vision? What changes do you need to make? Who do you need to support you? What routines or rituals will you create to make sure that you pause and assess going forward? We would love to hear what you are doing during this “great pause.”

In Next Week’s Post: Making feedback work

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1 Comment

  1. Doug Brady on October 27, 2020 at 9:02 am

    Nice ME
    Love the football analogy.
    Keep on keeping on.

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