It happened on January 19.
I knew what it was right away.
I was lifting weights—kettle bells to be exact.
As the weight went up, my left shoulder gave way.
I suspected my rotator cuff.
How could I be so sure?
Because eight years before I had experienced the same pain in my right shoulder.
That injury ultimately led to surgery and 32 weeks of rehab in 2009.
Now I was faced with the possibility of yet another operation and a lengthy recovery period.
Off to my surgeon I went.
He took one look at my wing and ordered an MRI.
The results came back—a one-centimeter rupture of the supraspinatus.
In other words, a torn rotator cuff.
I began mentally preparing myself for the repeat of the ordeal four years ago.
My surgeon sat down, “Let’s think outside of the box,” he said.
Out of the box?
I told him I was all ears.
“I wouldn’t suggest this to many people,” he began.
“But because your physical conditioning is so high, I want to see if we can rehab the area.”
“Rehab” as in no surgery?
That sounded like an excellent idea!
So off to physical therapy I went for one month.
The goal was to strengthen the small muscles around the tear as well as the muscles in my back and lats.
If that was successful, the tear might just be able to go along for the ride indefinitely.
Since I am a triathlete and the point of the rehab was to see if I could get back to racing without needing surgery, the real test would come when I got into the pool.
On February 23, I successfully completed a whopping 250 yards.
It wasn’t the 4200 yards I swam at the 2012 Ironman but it was a start.
Fast forward to May 24.
Three months of continual rehab and gradually increasing my swim were both on my mind as I emerged from a leisurely one-hour swim.
I really don’t know how far I swam. It was somewhere between 2500 and 3000 yards.
The rehab had worked!
On June 4, my surgeon dismissed me.
I continue my strengthening exercises and will for a long time. My shoulder is not 100%, but it’s a good 80% and that’s fine for now.
My dedication to my fitness and my nutrition had paid off.
I am thankful and grateful.
How about your organization?
How healthy is it?
Could it ward off a “rupture” if one occurred?
This month we’ll take a look at how your organization can boost its resistance to stresses and strains.
Here are some questions to think about as you ponder your organization’s health.
Is morale good?
Why or why not?
When was the last time the leadership in your organizations asked people how they were doing, what they thought, or what they needed?
Actually listened to the answers?
Actually did something to address the issues?
Is business up or down?
Do rank and file employees know why or why not?
Have you talked with them about what you and they need to do to keep business?
Have you discussed what needs to be done to avoid losing business or go after new business?
Have you had to do any recent “prunings” laying off people?
Have you told employees the reasons for the layoffs?
Have you let them know the status of their jobs?
Have you addressed any concerns they might have?
Have any valuable employees recently left?
Do you know why?
If it was a result of a problem on your end, have you moved to fix the problem?
For each of these issues ask yourself:
If you have talked about it, what plan is in place?
If you have not addressed the issue, why not?
So does your organization need some rehab?
Asking and answering the questions above will not solve all your problems but will go a long way to help bring your group back to health.