Like the rest of you, my colleagues and I are in the home stretch of our year… one more week, and then we shut it down for a lengthy, and well-deserved, break.
At the end of a long, good, tiring year, it is human nature to look forward to a break. Kicking back, hanging with family and friends, and forgetting about work is exactly what the doctor will order.
But in addition to all of that, I think it is important to spend part of that time self-reflecting… really reflecting. Anyone who is a regular reader of this blog knows that I write from a very personal space. I am not afraid to put myself out there and let you know what is really going on. I love the accountability of it. And I love the teaching moments that real sharing can create.
So here goes…
2019 has been a great year for our team, in so many ways. But on an individual level, this has been a challenging year, perhaps the hardest year in my Latimer career. As businesses grow and as teams change and grow, the demands on the leader change. The leadership style that worked five years ago is highly unlikely to work today. As I have written before, organizations are constantly changing organisms. Change one person, change one role, and the organism changes. And even without personnel changes, everyone is growing and evolving. No organization is ever exactly the same all the time.
All of this means that a good leader will need to evolve along with her/his organization.
I am a professional coach and teacher, and this is excellent advice that I have given to many clients over the years. But as with most advice, it is easier to give and harder to apply to the “man in the glass.”
This year has been the hardest year in memory for me, for a variety of reasons. As our team has grown, it has been harder than I thought to always know exactly how to grow accordingly. There have been some really good choices, and some shockingly bad ones… human nature I suppose. As I say all the time, using a baseball metaphor, if you fail 70% of the time or less, you will have a legitimate shot at the Hall of Fame. No one succeeds all the time.
But rather than simply shrugging off the failures, the healthiest move is to reflect on them, and make a plan to be better next time. I encourage all of you, regardless of your role within your organization, to spend some time over these holidays and think about what you did well, what you did poorly, and what needs to be better in 2020. Put the spotlight firmly upon yourself.
The attached anonymous poem is a personal favorite, and it guides my sense of reflection and accountability. I hope you enjoy it and that it helps you reflect.
Have a great day.
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