The Four R’s: how to embrace and overcome workplace challenges


The Four R’s: how to embrace and overcome workplace challenges 

Whether it is the market, finances, people, systems, technology, or change, the workplace is filled with challenges. From start-ups and Fortune 500 companies to entry-level staff and CEOs, adversity in the workplace affects us all. How we embrace these challenges and our ability to learn and grow from them stand as a reflection of character, culture, and adaptability.

Circumstances change and challenges arise. Instead of being afraid or running from challenges, reframe your view of them. View challenges for what they are - obstacles to growth. Position challenges as learning opportunities. See challenges as time of personal and professional development. Reframing your view allows you to face the challenges head-on. Consider these four steps when you’re faced with your next challenge. You’ll learn to embrace workplace challenges, as you move toward growth and opportunity.




When faced with a challenge – personal or professional – take a moment and think about the issue at hand. Why does this challenge make you nervous, anxious, worried, or upset? Why is it even a challenge? Do you lack resources? Is it uncomfortable and new? Is there a fear of failure or rejection? Recognizing and understanding your challenge is the first step to overcoming it. Identifying the challenge and dissecting its components will help in creating a plan of action.





Upon recognizing the problem, reflect on the issues at hand. Have there been similar challenges overcome? Has someone already tried to solve this problem? Are there resources available to help answer any questions? We are all too often quick to react when problems arise – in hopes of overcoming it quickly, painlessly, and effortlessly. However, that is when mistakes are made and more issues emerge. Take the time to reflect on the challenge. This will help you define the problem, consider the resources, and prepare a plan. Albert Einstein once said, “If I were given one hour to save the planet, I would spend 59 minutes defining the problem and one minute resolving it.” 





Overcoming challenges is not easy (hence the name challenge). The process requires planning, determination, and persistent efforts. Take inventory of resources and set a course of action. If you hit a roadblock along the way, think through the problem or brainstorm ideas with your team. It’s okay to make adjustments as you go, as long as you keep the end goal in mind. The road to success is seldom straight. Expect the ‘bumps and bruises’ and become stronger from the experience. True failure is giving up when things are hard. Be resilient.





Commit fully and stay determined. It may take time, and it may take a few attempts, but when you face a challenge head-on you will find a resolution. Whether that is a problem solved, a lesson learned, a new opportunity found, or simply growing from mistakes, embracing challenges far outweighs any reason to shy away from one. Remember, challenges are how you view them – obstacles or opportunities. Take one step at a time and maintain focus.