For as long as I can remember I wanted to be in leadership roles. More than that, I chose leadership roles...or they chose me...from a very early age. Full credit goes to my parents, both leaders in their professional lives who instilled that passion, and responsibility in me.
There was only one path for me.
Wanting vs Earning
Despite my desire to move as rapidly through the ranks as possible, I learned another lesson very quickly once I entered the workforce. Leadership opportunities are earned. They are not an entitlement...have little to do with academic background...and have absolutely nothing to do with a new generation promoting that they are different somehow. (tip: every generation is the same...we all want decent jobs, working for decent leaders, and to have some time for our personal lives too. Sorry to blow the cover on the myriad stories that shed 'insight' into Gen X, Y, Z, etc.)
So, the realization for me was that I became laser-focused on what was necessary to earn a leadership opportunity.
Laser-focused...albeit in an unconventional way.
As I reflect back on the biggest challenges I faced along the way it is obvious they boiled down to one major category. It was clearly the most detrimental threat to my journey, and sadly continues to get in the way today.
What was this problem?
Me. I was the threat.
How About You
There is a fix for this persistent threat: taking action. If I've learned anything over the years it is that I must continue to push, take risks, and recognize that I'm going to stumble (sometimes quite publicly) in order to overcome my own weaknesses.
We can't be good at everything, but we can constantly improve if we're willing to make decisions, learn, and continue moving forward. It's not easy though is it?
I'd love to hear from you.