Is success relevant if you don't feel successful?
How to thrive and not just survive in 2019
It’s 3 am. I’m awake. Again.
I know I have to make a tough decision, and I know it will be the right one. This doesn’t stop it waking me up every night though!
How do I know? Well I’ve been running a highly successful recruitment consultancy for 7 years now. I’ve lived, breathed and dreamt it 24/7. We have a fantastic client base, amazing stories where we have made a difference and there’s profit a plenty in the bank.
But it’s not what I am meant to do with my career. I am hiding in plain sight of my true passion, talent and calling.
And it’s driving me crazy because having “success” is irrelevant if you don’t feel successful!
I have to kill this business to be free to follow what in my heart I know to be the right path.
This was me back in 2009.
At the end of one massive career and leadership chapter and on the cusp of having the breakthrough moment 2 years ago on who I am professionally and how I want my business to be.
At times it’s been beyond tough, scary and almost overwhelming. But then what severely worthwhile pursuit isn’t!?
And now my business feels significant, exciting, connected, positive, impactful and strong.
Why am I sharing this with you?
Because as we reach the end of one year and get ready for what will be a pretty intense year ahead given all the uncertainty and unknown, it’s important to take a moment, raise your head out of the stresses of the day-to-day and remember all you have achieved, survived, created and led thus far!
It’s too easy to be stuck in a ground hog day of wondering what path you are on, what’s the right thing to do for your business and endlessly leak energy as you pivot around and around on the same questions.
It’s often harder to make a firm decision and stick to it, to give your views, instinct and plan proper time to breathe, take shape and grow. Especially when time-frames are shorter and demanding more with less.
If you are feeling like 2018 has taken it out of you as a high performing senior leader and 2019 is looking like the scary older sibling to boot, here are some key tips to help you thrive not just survive:
Make time to reflect on the last 3-5 years. What common themes present around your leadership, your business, your career? What do these themes tell you?
Focus on the last 12 months and create a box with 4 squares. In each square write what’s gone brilliantly, what’s been good, what could have been better and what hasn’t worked (yet)?
Look at the weighting of your boxes. Which are biggest and what do you think is at the root of this? Are you giving yourself an overly hard time or are you missing out on key achievement and successes when they happened because it’s easier to think about what didn’t work?
Next, let’s zoom to the end of 2019. What is your ideal for the 4 boxes in 12 months’ time? Dream big, listen to your intuition – give it space to come up for air – and fill out the boxes with no fear
Then compare the two sets of boxes. What do they tell you? What lens are you putting on your world that’s influenced, consciously or subconsciously, your thinking?
Finally, create a plan to help you move from the boxes today towards the boxes in 12 months.
In this plan include:
Who will help you achieve your plan?
What specifically do you need each person, including yourself, to commit to doing to deliver the plan and more?
When will they need to have delivered this by?
How will you know it’s working?
What core “why” will achieving your plan deliver to you and your business?
How does this make you feel?
What needs tweaking, or ripping up in the plan, to ensure you are excited, motivated and most importantly have my 3Cs for Successful Change: CLARITY, CONFIDENCE and COMMITMENT.
I hope this Leadership Lens helps you take a positive bow from 2018 and come back ready for 2019 on the centre stage, loving your role, the cast you are part of and equally importantly the play you are performing again and again!
If you are a high performing senior leader and want to talk through a big decision, approaching change or leadership challenge impacting your business or professional life, drop me a line to understand how I can help.