The Time When Leaders Are Most Likely To Fail
In the May 22nd edition of USA Today, it was reported that three climbers tragically died and two more were reported missing while descending from Mount Everest.Â Experts believe that exhaustion and altitude sickness in a place called the “death zone” were the causes.
For leaders, I think it is important to look atÂ WHEN andÂ WHY they perished.
These individuals passed away shortly after reaching the summit.Â It was after their mountaintop experience that theyÂ were most susceptible.Â Â Along with many leaders, I have suffered some of my greatest defeats immediately after great victories.Â It is counter-intuitive butÂ Andy Stanley is right when he says, “The greatest enemy to future success is past success.”
The following are just some of the reason I have failed after great success:
- Like the climbers, I suffered fromÂ absoluteÂ exhaustion.Â I was burnt out.Â It took so much to reach the summit, I simply had nothing left.
- Like the climbers, I reachedÂ an altitude I was not prepared for.Â I lacked the maturityÂ for that level of notoriety and success.
- IÂ became arrogant.Â I was “on top of the world.”
- I was overconfident.Â Â I felt I no longer needed to prepare as well as I did previously.
- I had aÂ faulty view ofÂ success.Â I forgot that it was not me but rather the team around me that was the reasonÂ forÂ my success.
- I was not alert.Â I got blind-sided.
- Pride.Â I did not think I needed God’s helpÂ anymore.
- And let’s be honest, whether it was exhaustion, arrogance, overconfidence,Â faulty thinking, or pride, SatanÂ knew exactly whereÂ I wasÂ weak and how best to attack me.
Leaders, you have a “death zone” as well.Â It too is right after a mountaintop experience.Â So rather than the attitudes I demonstrated above, be aggressive about practicing these behaviors so youÂ will have sustained success:
- Watch your health.Â Get proper rest and exercise.
- Be humble.
- Focus on the fundamentals and prepare well.Â Do not wing it.
- Invest in others.
- Give credit toÂ others.
- PracticeÂ generosity rather than selfishness.
- Earnestly seek God and pray.
- Guard your heart.
Leaders, am I alone on this?Â Have you also experienced great failure shortly after experiencing great success?
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