To Heck with “Safety First”: Be Bold & Grow

Happy 2018! Don’t you just love the smell of a fresh start?! Swelling health club parking lots and vigorous pursuit of healthy eating confirm that human nature values improvement. Alas, good intentions are often overwhelmed by previous habits (But that’s another story!).

Business leaders, too, have already devoted much time determining their companies’ 2018 growth objectives and tactics for achieving them. They’ve no doubt highlighted opportunities, but I wonder if those plans include “stepping outside the comfort zone”.

Over the past year, my own views on risks and opportunities have changed dramatically. 2017 kindly presented opportunities that pushed me out of my comfort zone and embrace risk. I was challenged to analyze and devise new ways to take advantage of opportunities. The results were great reward and some disappointment, but the growth experience felt great. This Business Journal article details my journey as a Super Bowl Connect Member. Keep reading about how nurturing your own growth nurtures your company’s growth.

Seeding company growth

People are people first, and they typically want to be personally successful. Individual success drives company success:

  • People form a team, in which everyone’s part contributes to the team’s success.
  • People lead teams, who work in sync to execute tactics; team leaders must inspire employees to nurture success.   
  • People at the helm must sow a vision and ensure that everyone in the company understands how their part contributes to its achievement.

While this sounds fairly easy, I’ve seen how great minds are not always great at capturing the hearts of those who drive company success. Executives are also human, which can limit them to their comfort cocoon.

A few thoughts about how to stretch beyond personal limits, dig below the surface of opportunities, and enter a new realm of growth:

  • Engage internal stakeholders at all levels to help analyze opportunities, look for opportunities within opportunities, and build support for those that are determined to offer the greatest promise.
  • Think about how outside influencers, potential partners, and customers can help shape how to best take advantage of opportunities (a big one for me).
  • Honor new ideas and collaboration (no man is an island…it takes a village).
  • Encourage agility and patience. The process typically vacillates as new information comes to light.
  • Communicate throughout the process with your people—ALL of them (the best ideas could come from the front lines). Use multiple channels for frequent updates them about progress and results. If they’re expected to execute, they need to feel entrenched in the process.

Managing expectations

There will be despair. There will be second-guessing. There will be disappointment. BUT keep in mind the great rewards that lie ahead:

  • A more engaged workforce determined to succeed
  • An external team of partners is as an extension of your team, driving everyone’s success
  • Personal invigoration driven by exploring new territory and conquering new challenges.

We’ve been there, done that, so let’s talk about how we can help you devise and execute new approaches to nurturing company growth through your people.

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