Crossing Monkey Bars

Retreat, Strategy, Wellbeing • October 30, 2023

“Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward.” – C.S. Lewis

There is so much advice out there that urges us to “put the past behind us,” or “let go of the baggage,” that could be doing us, and our businesses, real harm.

In my business leaders retreat I use my business planning experience to drag delegates through the most horrible parts of their previous year.

We will take a microscope and look at every mistake and missed opportunity and I will ask that most irritating of questions, “why?” Over and over.

What thousands of business simulations have taught me, and what I now help my clients with, is to carefully examine every error or mistake or scenario where they have left money on the table, or been out-negotiated or outplayed, by a rival. It is a painful experience.

But unlike C.S. Lewis, I don’t want my people to let go of a single rung on their 2023 monkey bar, until they have fully understood these three things;

1) What led up to you missing your revenue target / being late with your launch / losing key partners?

(This list is for example only, feel free to insert any part of your year that you would like to do over).

2) What could you have done differently that would have resulted in a different outcome?

3) What is the plan for next year if a similar circumstance rises its ugly head?

Only then will I encourage my delegates to let go, in order to move forward like C.S. Elliot advises. What is the point of messing up if we don’t learn everything we can from the experience?

I have conducted many simulations over the last 15+ years. How many? I don’t know the exact number, but it is in the thousands.

This different way of visualising our businesses is a key to better planning. And you know what comes with better planning?

More revenue, less frustration, MORE TIME to do the things that bring you joy.

I apologise to C.S. Lewis, but until you have squeezed every drop of learning out of your mistakes, then all that business pain will have been for nothing, and YOU ARE NOT READY TO LET GO OF THAT MONKEY BAR.

Disclaimer: I am only talking about your start-up / entrepreneurial / intrapreneurial / business-leader pain. If you are going through any form of personal trauma, I recommend to seek help from a professional close to you.

But if its your business that’s causing you pain, DM me, because wow, do I have a plan for you!

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