“What did you do to get promoted?” she asked, hoping for a leadership gem. “I got lucky” I said, knowing it wasn’t the whole answer.
I had just been sharing about the period of my life where I went from being a courier to a senior manager in New Zealand’s largest courier company over a five-year period.
To be honest ‘luck’ played its part. I joined when the company was growing exponentially and promotions created spaces. But luck alone doesn’t account for it. There were a bunch of other people who didn’t get promoted.
I believe I was promoted because I locked on to an axiom early on in my career;
Do all of my job and half of my boss’s
Doing ‘all of my job’ stopped by boss having to jump in and do it for me. [Note: If your boss is doing some of your job, fix that first. Not cool!]
Doing ‘half of my boss’s job’ meant I was learning outside my existing roles and helping my boss. When opportunity popped up, I was a logical choice.
Trying to do one and a half jobs, doesn’t mean I worked 1 1/2 times harder. It is hard work, but it also taught me to lead my teams better and focus on what was important.
“Do all of my job and half of my boss’s job,” clearly won’t work in every setting. But maybe it’s worth a try.
Nowadays being a CEO/Founder it’s a lot harder to do my boss’s job, but my focus remains largely the same. I need to ‘Do my job and half of my future job.’
If I want to the organisations I lead to have a global impact, the leader I am today is not sufficient for the future.
I remember sitting with a couple of young entrepreneurs a few years ago as they asked my opinion on their business idea. The weird thing about the conversation is they tried to tell me without actually disclosing what their idea was. They were concerned that I might steal their idea. After playing that dance I got pretty candid with them and told them I had enough business ideas of my own that I will never do, so I don’t really need their ideas.
Furthermore, I told them to go talk to some other people, who might just be interested in stealing their idea. People with deep pockets who could out execute them, but may just make great partners.
Over the years I have met more than my fair share of people who have the wrong default position when it comes to trust. They choose, sometimes because of past hurt, to never trust people until the person has earned their complete trust.
This is so sad and not for the reason that they may expect.
You see, trust works both ways. If you trust me … I trust you … then you trust me more.
If I start trusting you and sense that you don’t trust me, I assume you are untrustworthy. That you lack integrity.
Merely by not trusting others, you may be seen by everyone around you, as a person not to be trusted.
I know that trust is easier said than done…
You will get hurt.
You will have your trust abused.
At times it will cost you money.
And yet … we should trust anyway.
I don’t get time to … think
I don’t get time to … exercise
I don’t get time to … read
I don’t get time to … do good
I don’t get time to … play with the kids
I don’t get time to … relax
I don’t get time to … [fill in the blank]
You are right of course.
You only get time to do the things you choose to do. You can’t make time, but we can lose it doing the wrong things.
Like me you probably need to stop doing some things, to make time for the things that are really important.