Robert C. White & Company - June 2020




JUNE 2020


The Unexpected Power of ‘Stick-to-it-ness’

You probably missed it. I did until a friend texted me a link to the article.

record. He averaged 7 hours of training per day, including 4–5 hours of planks. Say what you will about Hood’s choice of time usage, but that is a commitment motivated by intense drive and“stick-to-it-ness.” Stick-to-it-ness is quite interesting to me, both professionally and personally. I believe it is the No. 1 determinant of success. I see it professionally when individuals and companies overcome stronger, smarter peers merely because they apply themselves and never give up. I see it personally as well, and I humbly state that I have a decent dose of stick-to-it-ness myself. I have been working to encourage stick-to-it-ness in my children, too. There are some family mantras that the kids are even starting to repeat after hearing me say them so often, including “Eddingers never quit” and “Everything is hard until it’s easy.” I also make sure they add “yet” to the end of any statement that starts with “I can’t.”We have a fun, light, loving household, but grit is required to have success in life, and I want them to know it. At Robert C. White & Company, stick-to-it-ness and grit are not explicitly named as core values, but they are winked at by two of our values: “Endlessly Improving” and “We Are Doers.” I want to share the text of those values, as I feel it informs both how we think about getting better and the work that we do.

It actually made national and some international (BBC) news, but it was over fast, especially since the coronavirus coverage was ramping up. On Feb. 15, 2020, George Hood set a Guinness World Record for holding the plank position continuously for 8 hours, 15 minutes, and 15 seconds. When I first heard the news, I had a hard time wrapping my head around the feat. Over 8 hours holding a plank. To be honest, I tried to see how long I could do one and couldn’t get past a few minutes with some serious effort (see my struggling photo).

Luke holding a plank

We truly believe that this company and the people who make it up are works in progress, not finished products.

We Are Doers:

We know that while ideas are important, they are worthless without execution.

We understand that being proactive allows us to shape the situation and stop potential big problems in their tracks.

For me, the more interesting piece of the story is that George Hood set the record at the age of 62.

We focus on results, not just tasks or responsibilities.

During an interview with CNN’s Anderson Cooper, Hood dismissed the interviewer’s amazement with the statement “62 is just a number.”

Whenever we fall short of these values (and we do sometimes, which I was reminded of earlier this week when I talked to a client and it was blatantly clear we weren’t being proactive in his situation the way we should have), it is our responsibility to stick to it and work on improving. We are a work in progress, not a finished product. Thank you for your patience and trust as we continue to work to get better.

Just a number indeed!

The former Marine and Drug Enforcement Administration officer actually set an earlier record in 2011 at 1 hour and 20 minutes, but he failed to recapture the record when he lost in a competition where a new world record was set at 8 hours, 1 minute, and 1 second by Mao Weidong of China.

Endlessly Improving:

We always work to get better as individuals, as a team, and as a company.

This is where grit comes in.

Yours in “Everything is hard until it’s easy,”

Determined to win back the title, Hood started an 18-month fitness program leading up to the new

We search for better ways to do things and are not afraid of change or trying something new.


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