Some men give up their designs when they have almost reached the goal while others, on the contrary, obtain a victory by exerting, at the last moment, more vigorous efforts than ever before.
Great works are performed not by strength, but by perseverance.
-- Dr. Samuel Johnson
Sometimes, leaders appropriately "call it a day" in a particular endeavor. If the timing proves wrong for a venture or the return on the investment does not merit the expenditure of additional effort or resources, leaders correctly bring a struggle to a halt. Too often, however, they simply fail to triumph and "snatch defeat from the jaws of victory" by not aggressively seeing through a matter to its ultimate and proper conclusion. Knowing when not to give up at a time when resistance seems overwhelming is more of an art than a science. A combination of perspective, strong and timely support from trusted advisors, and personal courage appears to mark leaders who consistently push through adversity. Even currently successful leaders will benefit by cultivating higher capacities for those variables. In that way, they remain prepared to thrive in the periods of greater adversity that accompany additional responsibility.
Accurately assessing the progress of an effort can prove challenging, especially in the midst of resistance. Many leaders prematurely end a worthwhile effort simply because they lack a proper perspective. Even seasoned leaders can fail to remember that anything...