Tenacity, a leadership quality; probably least understood and underestimated. It is often abandoned when frustration or boredom sets in.
According to the Merriam-Webster online dictionary, a definition of tenacious is: persistent in maintaining, adhering to, or seeking something valued or desired. It comes from the latin tenac – tenax tending to hold fast and from tenēre to hold.
Think about the manager who inherits a group of employees – a few are superstars, most are competent, and there are always the couple who need a jump start every day. How does is the boss successful in developing the under performer, especially when they lack motivation to succeed. Why not just give up and focus on those who want to be coached? Finding examples of tenacity is a challenge, but I was on the hunt and I found some interesting stories.
Stephen Norrington, a Hollywood writer/director describes in his blog entry on Script Frenzy: Tenacity. Determination. Grit. He quotes, ” Make sure you have thick skin.” Read about the trade offs of being authentic and battling for a place in the business of selling movies.
A Voice to Speak for Others shares the story of Kate Adamson and her husband where tenacity was put to the test against insurmountable odds. It can happen to any of us – a sudden accident, illness with loss of communication as we know it. It is the story of hope, belief, determination and the will to live.
In Andrew Bordeaux’s post on Growthink, he writes about how one author, Leonard Miodinow’ shares research in his book, The Drunkard’s Walk: How Randomness Rules Our Lives and tests if the laws of randomness or if talent has more impact on our ability to succeed. It may not be an either-or answer. We all get tested along the way… is persistence the answer?
David Zimmerman’s Lambeau Legends Packer Profiles of Courage provides inspiration personally and professionally. Eighteen examples of tenacity and determination instill the desire in us to triumph over anything that gets in the way of reaching your goal.
On a lighter note, even in the World Of Warcraft (WOW) online game, tenacity comes up as an important skill or bonus. For example in the world of hunters, pets within the tenacity tree have extra health and other talents for staying alive. In the latest battleground, Wintergrasp, tenacity gives you an extra advantage if you are the underdog.
After all, isn’t that what it’s all about..beating the odds with determination?