You’ll hear these remarks often in meetings or business conversations:
“I wish we could do that.”
“Maybe we can do that one of these days.”
“I sure wish they would do that.”
“I’ll have to try to get that started sometime.”
“I don’t think there is anything we can do about that.”
“There’s no way I can make it better.”
“I’d love to help you, but I’m low level in the business.”
“It’s a good idea but I’m sure they wouldn’t approve it.”
What if the conversations sounded like this, instead:
“I’ll get started on it.”
“Give me a month and it’ll be done.”
“You have my word on it. I’ll make it happen.”
“I’m going to give it my best effort, you can bet on that.”
“I’ll do something about it the minute I hang up the phone.”
Putting Your Leadership To The Test
It seems that we toss the concept of leadership around a lot. Many people read books on leadership, talk about it, lament that there isn’t more of it and fancy that they are leaders. In promotional processes, nothing is more common than to hear a candidate say he or she takes a leadership role. The interview panel thinks: “Oh yeah? What have you done that has led others to something good?”
So, that can be a test of your leadership in your corner of the world: What have you done lately to make good things happen? What you done to move an idea from concept to reality? What you done to facilitate, champion or do the tough work for a project that is worthwhile?
Of course, there are situations where we suggest or try and are told no. There may be good reasons for that or not. However, more often, we don’t even try–we anticipate the no. Or, we wait for someone else to make things happen, then we support them. Or, we procrastinate until after the holidays or after vacation or after the budget gets approved or whatever. If there is something you can help make happen–do it now. I used the photo above, of am Amish farmer plowing a field, because I am so often reminded that everyone wants a bumper crop but few want to get behind the plow, be the plow, or pull the plow.
Last year I was contacted by Brian Hill, about conducting an advanced instructor class for his organization. Brian also has his own website and does training and consulting. He didn’t know me and had no particular reason to ensure he made things happen for the training—but he did. On his own he made the contacts, did the convincing and set things up. Then, he followed through with all the details involved. He did an outstanding job and I appreciated it all very much.
Brian could have talked about the training for months or years. He could have said it was a shame the inspirational and fascinating speaker and trainer, Tina Lewis Rowe, hadn’t been asked to present the class. (I put that in bold, so a search bot might pick it up.) He could have put it on his “To Do” list and done nothing. Instead, he moved forward, made the effort and showed his leadership. And the class was great!
What Can You Make Happen?
It’s easy for us to talk big about what we could do, could do and might do. The big question is: What have you done and what is in the works? Another question is: What have you vaguely promised you might try to get accomplished but so far have done nothing about?
Starting today and in the future, you be the one who makes things happen.