A long time ago, I was running a distance race on a college track team when I noticed my shoe was untied. The only reason I became aware of the problem was because my shoe was slipping at the heal and slowing me down. Buried in the middle of the pack, I had to decide whether to “make a pit stop” and tie my shoe or finish the race with the impediment. If I stopped to tie my shoe, I would fall behind. If I fought the slippage, I would have to perform at less than peak ability. What would you do?
I tied my shoe.
These circumstances resurfaced recently when I listened to the challenges of a business development team that had recently experienced the departure of their charismatic leader to an exciting new role. One of the team’s managers had therefore been promoted to fulfill the succession gap and was doing her old job and her new job simultaneously as she figured out how to wedge recruitment into her overwhelmingly demanding schedule.