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The Opportunity Gap Challenge

From one point of view, the gap is a problem. Change perspective and it becomes an opportunity. Consider the image below (Photo by Chase Moyer on Unsplash). The athlete jumping appears to be mid-backflip from the top of a rock. The distance from the top of the rock to the beach is identical to the distance from the beach to the top of the rock. Is it easier to flip off of the rock, or onto the rock? Thanks to gravity, getting down is typically easier than getting to the top. (NOTE: I do NOT recommending flipping off The Rock) The opportunity here is to creatively imagine different ways to get from the ground to the top of the rock. Maybe the athlete introduces new tools, assistants, or techniques to get to the ground to the top of the rock without simply climbing it. The challenge is to find a way. When we are leading teams, perceived gaps in understanding or even deployment can be seen as problems... or opportunities. The opportunity is to learn why the gap exists. What was said, what was heard, what was instructed, what was executed. When leaders focus on understanding why the gap exists rather than blaming someone for the gap existing, they can learn to close that gap. In doing so, they can potentially prevent other gaps from ever appearing. Please share a time when you closed a gap and it was a systemic change rather than a one-off experience.


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