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How Business Leaders Can Leverage Tenacity


How Business Leaders Can Leverage Tenacity

It was a year of hard knocks, for individuals and certainly for businesses, which struggled to survive as the COVID-19 pandemic spawned a weak economy that wreaked havoc on sales goals, performance goals, and profits.

But 2020 is now history and individuals and businesses both need to foster a new attitude if they hope to succeed, says Dr. Allen Lycka (, co-author of the international bestseller The Secrets to Living a Fantastic Life.

“If there is one attribute that determines success, it’s tenacity,” says Lycka, who for three decades was a cosmetic dermatologist, but today is a transformational keynote speaker, thought leader, and life-changing coach.

“While intelligence, hard work, and skill are important, it is tenacity and perseverance that ultimately make the difference in achieving success. Businesses that show those traits are the ones that will do well.”

In the process, though, those businesses and the people who lead them may need to shove aside any lingering pessimism brought about by the pandemic, and dig deep inside themselves for the optimism that dwells there, Lycka says.

Lycka is convinced tenacity resides in everyone and it’s just a matter of bringing it out. He suggests a few ways to do so:

Fix your belief system. Lycka says the No. 1 reason people give up – whether in business or other endeavors – is that they harbor false beliefs. They are certain that they can’t succeed because something – genetics, bad luck, some other factor beyond their control – is keeping them down. Businesses aren’t going to flourish with that type of fatalistic thinking, he says. He points out that in the bestselling book Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell wrote that becoming expert at something takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice. In other words, tenacity. Of course, “deliberate practice” is a specifically defined term that involves goal setting, quick feedback, and constant efforts at improving. “Integral to this is to have a written plan and goals,” Lycka says. “Goals are dreams with a deadline.”

Be wary of naysayers. In business planning, as in life planning, it’s important to brush off the negative criticism from others. For example, someone determined to launch a new business might hear from naysayers that this is the wrong time or that the basic idea for the business is a bad one. “If you truly believe that your plan is a good one and that it’s what you want to do, then you should listen to yourself rather than others,” Lycka says.

Look for role models. One way to summon your inner tenacity is to choose role models who exhibit the traits you admire. “If you have role models who are tenacious, you can pattern yourself after them,” Lycka says. For individuals, that can mean looking to successful people who overcame odds or persevered despite encountering failure along the way. For businesses, it can mean studying how their best competitors thrived despite difficulties, or how the entrepreneurs they admire shrugged off setbacks to accomplish success.

“Thankfully, we all have what it takes to be tenacious,” Lycka says. “You can always build up your resolve by using some of these tips, but don’t forget that it’s been there all along. Everything you need, you already have. Just have to recognize it and work at it.”


Dr. Allen Lycka (, previously acknowledged as one of the leading cosmetic dermatologists globally for three decades – he is now a transformational keynote speaker, thought leader, life-changing coach, workshop provider and mentor. At the top of his career in 2003, he was crushed by a misdiagnosis of ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease) and was told he had six months to live. He defied the odds by finding another doctor who saved his life. A near death survivor, he discovered his “golden pearls” through the experience. He has now dedicated his life to helping others and provides answers in his international bestselling book, The Secrets To Living A Fantastic Life… Discover The 13 Golden Pearls Within, co-authored with Woman of Distinction Winner Harriet Tinka, who had a similar life experience, surviving death after being kidnapped, stabbed, and left for dead. The “Golden Pearls” are the commonality they discovered. 


How The Economic ‘Reset’ Can Work In Your Favor

While news of vaccines on the horizon signal hope, some analysts think a sizable chunk of the U.S. economy has been damaged permanently by COVID-19, with more layoffs and business closures still to come in 2021.

But to others, the future of a “new economy” in the post-COVID world is bright, opening doors for entrepreneurs, working professionals and small-to-medium business owners, says Rod Robertson, Managing Partner of Briggs Capital (, international entrepreneur, and author of Winning at Entrepreneurship: Insider’s Tips on Buying, Building, and Selling Your Own Business.

“While about 40 percent of the American economy has been turned into debris, the playing field has been cleared, and the whole business environment has gone through a reset,” Robertson says.

“At the same time, people who upgrade their skill-sets and broaden their thinking won’t be left behind. So instead of people saying, ‘How lost I am, how crushed I am, woe is me,’ this is an exciting time, especially for young people, who don’t have to wait for 10, 20, or 30 years for their turn to be a business leader. They can make a generational jump by stepping up and embracing technology, and by understanding in the rubble and chaos what kernels of business are sprouting up.”

Robertson says these points are worth considering when planning for success in a changing U.S. economy:

Don’t buy the theory that COVID will destroy entrepreneurship. “It’s a great time to invest in or buy a business because the playing field has been reset,” Robertson says. “There is going to be a whole new generation of fortunes made in the next three to five years. These are small businesses, companies that are nimble and can shift easily.”

Investment in tech is trending. Robertson notes that over $50B has been spent by private equity on tech deals in 2020. “This fact dwarfs the issues that have swamped legacy or regular businesses that have seen a huge retraction in investments,” Robertson says. “The pivot to tech has accelerated and beware those firms that cling to their old ways of doing business.”

Make the necessary cuts and stay streamlined. “Seismic shifts are coming in 2021 as companies prepare for the new world economy,” Robertson says. “Some businesses must make drastic cuts and changes in directions. Pivot quickly and don’t be among the last firms to embrace change; it could be your demise. It is more important than ever to streamline operations and create an implicit trust with employees to ensure your business thrives in the post-pandemic world.”

Remote workers can’t afford to coast. report on remote work productivity during the pandemic found that global productivity among employees working from home due to COVID-19 has dropped. “U.S. employees are leading the pack both in terms of the amount still working remotely, and productivity declines,” Robertson says. “Salespeople without direct supervision aren’t producing like they used to. Remote workers who are coasting need to get in tune with their organizations to keep their jobs.”

Going solo isn’t a bad thing for boomers. Robertson says older workers who may get displaced can make the most of opportunities to fly solo. “The people over 50 and 60 are not grasping technology,” Robertson says, “and a lot of them are going to be pushed off the playing field. How do they switch to being an independent contractor, and stretch out their working years to 70-72? It’s time to reinvent and reinvigorate themselves.”

“Businesses and their best workers must shift with the times or invite extinction,” Robertson says. “The good news is, the reset opens great new opportunities, and people can take the blessing coming from all this chaos and turn it into business success.”


Rod Robertson ( is an international entrepreneur and author of Winning at Entrepreneurship: Insider’s Tips on Buying, Building, and Selling Your Own Business. Robertson is the owner of Briggs Capital, a boutique international investment bank. He has conducted business in over 15 countries while focusing on developing small-to-medium-sized businesses and taking them to market worldwide. Robertson’s 20-plus-year career in transaction experience and entrepreneurship includes guest lecturing around the globe at institutions such as Harvard Business School and other top-flight MBA schools as well as business forums and news outlets worldwide. He sits on numerous boards, guiding firms to streamline operations and make businesses more profitable before selling.