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What to Do When You Hit the Ceiling

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Author - Peter M. Beaumont - July 2018

We all have or will hit the ceiling at some point when we are not sure how to grow ourselves or our business. We just seem to lose momentum. This can make us feel frustrated and in some cases, ill-equipped to lead or push through.

However, “maxing out” is a normal part of growth. It is not always on the same trajectory or at the same pace. Instead, it tends to happen in spurts, like adolescent growth. Larry E. Greiner wrote an article for the Harvard Business Review where he stated that all organizations go through evolution and revolution and “the resolution of each revolutionary period determines whether or not a company will move forward into its next stage of evolutionary growth”.

One of three things can happen when you start to bump up against capacity.

  1. You have a breakthrough! But, you hit another ceiling later…
  2. You flat line.
  3. You fail.

Not so fun fact: over 50% of firms fail within five years.

There are two key decisions to be made when you realize you have hit the ceiling. The first is to acknowledge it – easier said than done. The second is to commit to get to the bottom of the cause and then solve it.

Developing a strong leadership team and encouraging them to adopt and master time-tested skills is a surefire way to achieve success. EOS® has identified these as the Five Leadership Abilities™. They are:

  1. Simplify
    Success doesn’t have to be complicated. Simple, easy-to-use tools such as the Vision/Traction Organizer™, a two-page business plan, are key to the success of the companies we work with.
  2. Delegate
    Identify what you love to do and what you are best at and delegate the rest. Invest in teaching others what you do so they can do it for you. Dan Sullivan calls this Unique Ability®.
  3. Predict
    Determine where you want to go and how you’re going to get there. We help companies create long and short-term goals which are simple in nature. Long-term goals are anything from 90 days to 5-10 years out. Short-term goals are everything that needs to be completed within 90 days to achieve those long-term predictions.
  4. Systematize
    Get the majority of your company’s key processes documented and enforce that everyone is to follow the same process. Doing so will create consistency, scalability, profitability and more fun!
  5. Structure
    Do you have the right people in the right seats that will take your business to the next level? Take a big step back to see the big picture and decide the simplest, most effective way to structure your team to get to the next level.

Don’t fear hitting the ceiling. Recognize it for what it is – an opportunity to adapt and move to the next stage of growth. If leadership can embrace and adopt the five leadership abilities, the transition can be less overwhelming and short-lived.

Author, Peter M. Beaumont, is a Business Advisor with The Resultants as well the Founder and Principal of ConnXN Consulting. He is also the author of The Relationship Roadmap, a comprehensive guide to building relationships with strategic clients.

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