Definition of “The Suck”

Definition of “The Suck”:

From Rhod:

I gave a speech today about “the suck” and things you can do to ensure your success when in it. Power point presentation is an effective tool, but I am a believer that the written word has the ability to go deeper. I therefore thought I would share my talk with our readers – hopefully you will get something out of it. Enjoy.

“Originally defined as any situation in and around a war time conflict where conditions are undesirable and it is a testament to the dedication of those who endure it.”

It is not something that is exclusive the military. Jon and I could stand here and tell stories about what we have had to endure over the years, but this is not about us, it’s about you. We want to talk to you about what your “suck” potentially looks like. Also what you can do to ensure that you not only get through it, but become a stronger more enlightened individual by having experienced it.

In my experience there are only two ways to get through a situation when the totality of the circumstances seem insurmountable. First, you have to approach it like you would approach eating an elephant ……. You simply have to take it one bite at a time. You have to break down the challenge that faces you into segments that your mind, body and soul feel are “doable”. If you don’t, it is over before you begin. Second, you have to shoulder your team mates/co-workers that are enduring “The Suck” alongside you and they have to reciprocate. The teamwork element is not only essential to get the job done; it allows you to perform feats of extraordinary human endurance. What I specifically mean by endurance in the business world is pulling 20+ hour days for weeks or even months at a time. How do I know? I have seen it and experienced it. Knowing that there are other people in your team working just as hard as you to get a task complete by a certain deadline is a huge crutch. This crutch is, does, can and needs to be relied upon to get you through “The Suck” and deliver on time. We all look to certain individuals who display signs of strength in times of hardship. We all have that ability, it is just a question of mindset and where your individual mindset resides. To have a team of people, who all display the quality of strength during periods of adversity at work, creates a momentum that is both rare and massively powerful. Be those people – it’s a choice – plain and simple.

Once the task is complete, the intimate details of the experience are exclusive only to those who participated. This creates a strong common bond amongst those individuals. The experience can be described as an oxymoron – at face value none of us want to be a part of it because of our perceived fears of what could potentially be involved. However, once we have endured and overcome said challenge, our actual reality in truth wasn’t half as bad. We are then glad that we were part of the solution and feel empowered by the experience.

It is equally important that “the company” be a little more invested in its workforce during these times of hardship.  The leadership must be proactive about those things that can be done to alleviate some of the stresses involved. Simply by providing lunch a few times a week, having “ice cream Thursday”, spot bonuses, recognition awards or even a simple thank you can have tremendous impact on morale. Moreover it is an acknowledgement to your employees that you understand and appreciate what they are currently enduring and that they are appreciated.  Management must understand that loyalty and sacrifice to and for “the company” are earned. You don’t simply get it because you pay their wages. Talented people can find wages elsewhere. Remember that the difference between good leaders and great leaders is that great leaders, even though their workload is at an astronomical level, still have the desire and capacity to inspire their team.

Overcoming adversity in any form is the one single element known to us that creates a deeper understanding of self, and that is why Rogue Consulting Group has designed leadership and team building experiences around this belief. When 2014 decides to present you your individual “Suck”, remember to break it down into sizeable pieces, use all of your resolve and don’t wallow in self-pity. Self-pity creates a chink in your armor so it doesn’t belong in this environment. Finally, inspire yourself and your team with the “do as I do” NOT the “do as I say” philosophy.

We would like your feedback on what your personal “Suck” is like. Comment below or on the Rogue Consulting Group Facebook Page.

Cheers and embrace “The Suck”

One comment

  1. Travis H.

    I was fortunate enough to hear this speech and am grateful for your insight.

    Another important thing I always try to remember is that while you may be enduring a shared “suck” with your team…everyone’s individual perception (reality) of that suck can still look just a bit different.

    So while on the surface it may seem that everyone is going through the same thing, the person across from you may be going through totally different internal challenges.

    It is important to keep this in mind so that you can remain empathetic throughout the suck and build the strong relationships you mention.

    Thanks again!


    “I don’t care if you’re waiting for lunch, you can go 3 weeks without food!!” …loved it

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