Consider This

Robert Stevenson’s Thoughts on the Pursuit of Excellence

How's That Working For You?

April 29, 2023

by Robert Stevenson

There is a man who comes to the gym where I work out who is at least 50 pounds overweight. He started coming about a year ago and he looks exactly the same size as he did then. If his goal was to lose some weight, then he better re-evaluate what he is doing, because it isn’t working.

In all aspects of life and business I think it is important to ask ourselves, “How is that working for me / us / the company?” Sometimes, you may even want to enlist the advice of a friend, associate, or consultant and ask them how they feel about what you are doing. Asking the question is the easy part; listening to the answer and then doing something about it is where it gets tough.

Years ago, Rubbermaid set out to invent a new product every day, 7 days per week, 365 days per year. Fortune magazine once wrote that Rubbermaid was more innovative than 3M, Intel, and Apple; now that is impressive. Then Rubbermaid started choking on over 1,000 new products in less than 36 months. Innovation became more important than filling orders on time, overhead expenses, or cost controls. They ended up closing 9 plants and laid off over 1,100 employees before Newell Corporation came in to buy (rescue) the company.

I had a mentor who once told me, “Rob, I don’t care how hard you work … I care how smart you work. Results are what counts.”

Rubbermaid was working hard, putting in time, money, and effort while at the same time destroying their company. How was that working for them? The REALITY of the SITUATION … it was not working for them. Innovation for the sake of innovation doesn’t ensure success. Hard work, effort, and activity don’t ensure success. Those are all great things to have as long as they help you/me/us/ the company reach our goals.

Instill in yourself and your employees that if you aren’t getting better every day … you will lose. Markets move, power shifts, new inventions and technology change dominance, so always feel vulnerable and then OVER-PREPARE. To stay ahead of your competition, you need to start thinking - If you were competing against yourself, how would you beat you … and then fix it.

Look for the weak P’s
Look for weak POINTS, weak PEOPLE,
and either fix them or get rid of them.

Change is to business as what oxygen is to life. In life – you can either breathe or die. In business - you can either keep changing or die. Change is the constant in all aspects of life. So, how is what you are doing working for you?

"Your only true security in life
is your ability to perform."

About the Author

Robert Stevenson is an expert at building a high-performance business culture, improving efficiency, and accelerating growth. He is one of the most widely sought-after speakers in the world today, as well as a best-selling author. He has owned five companies, sold internationally in over 20 countries. Robert has spoken to over 2,500 companies throughout the world and his research in the area of corporate and entrepreneurial success is extensive. Over 2 million people have benefitted from his powerful, practical, and thought-provoking programs. He is a true master at blending facts, inspiration, conviction, and humor into all his programs.

Companies like FedEx, Prudential, Lockheed Martin, Chevron, American Express, and Berkshire Hathaway continue to rely on him for a fresh, unique perspective on businesses’ most crucial issues. To learn more about Robert and what he can do for your team visit his website at

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