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When an entity (organization, person) does the best they can but are hindered due to outside influence or chance.

  • Is this two questions; hindered by influence and hindered by chance? All endeavors suffer their practical environment and do the best they can, so I assume you mean exceptional duress and extremely bad luck. It will be interesting to see the answers. – user116032 Aug 30 '15 at 5:06
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Perhaps "thwarted endeavor".

  • Thwarted describes something that didn't work out, that was disappointingly unsuccessful.

  • Endeavor is a purposeful or industrious undertaking (especially one that requires effort or boldness).

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If they are being deliberately hindered, I would probably say they were hamstrung or hobbled.

If the hindering was more incidental or accidental, then I might say they were being weighed down or encumbered.

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