The other day, I talked a friend who was struggling in his business. He is a very talented person with a lot of skill. But he’s working long hours and struggling to keep up. I tried to encourage him, let him know his struggle was normal and asked a tough question: Who are you learning from?
We all need people in our life to push us forward. We need people in our lives to pull us forward. Those who push your forward are friends, family members, and inspirational figures. Those who pull you forward have been where you’ve been before.
When I asked my friend who he was learning from, he mentioned someone very famous and very successful in his space. That guy might have been a hero, but he wasn’t a good mentor.
It’s great to have heroes. We need them. But we also need to choose mentors who are a few steps ahead of us, people who have been where we are and still remember what it was like. People who can provide practical advice not paint a picture of the ideal.
Recently, I shared a lesson with my kids on how to get good at anything. “Emma, there’s three things you need to know if you want to get good at anything,” I said. “And these three things work for piano, school work, raising chickens, or whatever you want to get good at.” The rest of the conversation went like this…
First, you gotta learn. Isn’t it amazing that people can spend two years of their life researching, writing, re-writing, re-researching and writing a book and you can buy it for $15? Isn’t it awesome there are how-to videos online for how to fix a car or cook rice? There’s so much good information out there, and that’s the first step to getting good at something. You gotta learn.
Next, you gotta practice. You can learn about songs and composers and scales, but if you want to get good at the piano, you’ve got to practice. Experts are really just people who practiced and worked hard. When you see people who are really good at something, remind yourself you’re looking at someone who worked really, really hard and practiced a lot.
Finally (and this is the silver bullet), you’ve got to get a coach. Your piano teacher is your coach. She knows stuff you don’t know but she can help you. All the great performers and athletes and successful people have coaches. This is what will separate you from the rest of the pack, and this is the secret ingredient.
Option #1: Clarity Day
One of the best ways to get help is to block off a day for some forced and focused work. Be honest…you don’t have time in your normal schedule to cram this in. That’s why you’ve got to make time, to put something on the calendar, and to make the investment so something doesn’t pull you away.
A Day of Clarity can be the thing that kickstarts your growth. It’s a structured time, filled with discussions that lead to a specific outcome. I’ll come to you, and we’ll have the important conversations in the room.
At the end of the day, you’ll have a one-page plan, effectively reducing your company to just one sheet of paper. You’ll know what to work on next and where to focus your people. You’ll come back to this document time and time again as you keep leading your organization to greater clarity (and greater results)
We’ll work from 9-5 and you can involve relevant people from your team. You’ll be surprised at how much we can accomplish in one focused day of work.
Option #2: Consulting
If one day isn’t enough or if you find yourself in a unique situation, we can create a path just for you.
There’s nothing like having a guide commit to walk with you through important seasons of life. My long-term consulting arrangements typically last anywhere from five to eight months and provide enough time to understand your culture, capitalize on your unique strengths, and implement a plan that will result in lasting change. We will assess your current situation, create a customized roadmap to the preferred future and help you execute a growth plan.
- The engagement period typically begins with a 1-2 day visit. We talk about strengths, weaknesses, and goals. I meet with you, meet with your team, and get a good feel for your organization.
- From there, we’ll work on your biggest opportunities for 5-8 months, depending on your needs. Thorough Skype video chats and phone calls, we will work through key issues. I’ll mix coaching and advice with action steps and implementation.
- You and I will have bi-weekly phone calls to stay on track. You will complete a short form before each call to help you and I prepare and maximize our time.
- You will have access to resources, relationships, and relevant documents.
- You will have unlimited call, text and email access throughout our relationship. If something comes up, I’m here for you.