Focused On How Hard Things Are? You’re Losing

emerging leaders program

It’s easy. WAY TOO EASY, to let the current state of business consume you.

Falling into a void of complacency and despair. One day becomes two, becomes many. All of a sudden it’s been a month and things haven’t gotten any better for you, your team or your business.

I’m going to put a warning on this article. You might hate me at the end of it, but that’s OK. What you’ll love is the truth that sits on this page. If you REALLY hate it or REALLY love it, let me know either way and we’ll hash it out over a Zoom call.

Either way, I’ve given you three ways to kick @ss as well as real tips on how to do that in each area.

Go get ‘em, legend.

No one loves a tragedy, but will this be one for you?

You’d have to live under a rock to feel like we are not well and truly in an economic, health and lifestyle upheaval. The house is shaking to its foundations and history is being written in a way that will surely make the textbooks.

It isn’t easy for anyone. I’ve yet to have a client say they are unaffected. Every single client has felt some level of change. What’s been dramatically different from client to client are three things:

  1. Mindset
  2. Outlook
  3. Action

In uncertain times, you alone get to choose to lead or be led. I want you to be like the buffalo in the image above. Standing frostbitten but unfaltering. Irreverent about the pain today, knowing that survival means moving forward in spite of the odds. Moving forward and unstoppable.

Here’s how Mindset, Outlook and Action will help dictate where you, your team and your business come out of this.

1. Mindset

The habits, values and beliefs you carry will trump any external context. I’ve seen two identical industry players adopt very different mindsets. I’ve seen leaders crumble under the weight of self-doubt while others punch a hole through uncertainty.

Struggling with your mindset? Do these three things:

  1. Heavily filter your inputs – just like your body responds to the food you eat, your mindset adjusts to your inputs. Everything you read, hear, see, smell etc has an impact on your mindset. Ask yourself, “what inputs am I accepting”?
  2. Aggressively eliminate naysayers and $hitty media – Whether it’s a dodgy in-law or catastrophising co-workers, both need to be eliminated (legally, of course). These are inputs (mentioned above) BUT are so destructive that they got their own honourable mention here. Stop spending time on Facebook. Turn to alternatives like positive podcasts, useful tools, etc. We’ve got heaps of great content you can check out here.
  3. Set your priorities and build habits to support them – do your feelings dictate what you do? If your acting in the moment, you’ll never have enough energy to win. F**k that. Set your priorities and structure them into your day. Aggressively manage them through routines, calendar reminders, social contracts, etc. Whatever you choose, just choose something that takes the mindset pressure off.

2. Outlook

A quote I love: “The person who says they can and the person who says they can’t are both usually right”. True story.

It’s a pretty rare occasion where someone with a negative outlook gets a positive result. Yet, I’ve seen too many leaders slide into despair. Not you. Here’s how to fix that:

  1. Question your assumptions – What things have you assumed about yourself, your team and your business? SpaceX cut the cost of getting to space down to 1/11th of what it cost most others. How? By stripping back every assumption and building solutions that dealt purely in fact. What assumptions are plaguing you?
  2. Search for facts – The reality is that you can find an article to confirm any bias/assumption you have, but when’s the last time you searched for facts? What are those facts you need to grow you and your business? I can tell you, the world will be changed by COVID, BUT the world also won’t end. That means there is a truth for you somewhere in the middle.
  3. Understand there are opportunities in every scenario – Using the facts above, what can you do for you and your team. I’ve seen companies with hundreds of employees adapt in less than a month. I’ve also seen other clients pivot into new business areas and see new revenue come in immediately. Economic challenge doesn’t mean death for your business. Find the opportunity that fits your values, then go after it aggressively.

3. Action

Once you’ve sorted your mindset and outlook it’s time to make a decision and take action. I’m dead serious. I’ve seen leaders spend the last month wallowing without making any of the tough calls. You have to do something.

Imagine a bus rolling towards you at 80 kmph. You wouldn’t stare at the bus then complain that you woke up in the ER with broken bones and a bruised ego. You’d jump to the left, to the right or on top of it (that’s bold…). You might still get flattened by the bus if it swerves, you trip, etc but you also might just get out of it ok. The point is, you have to take action. Here’s how:

  1. Ask is this a cul-de-sac or cliff decision? – Is any decision you are about to make reversible (like a cul-de-sac) or irreversible (like driving off a cliff)? If it’s reversible, just get on with it. If it’s not, how can you get the right amount of info to act quickly?
  2. Focus on done > perfect – The winners in this won’t be those who did it perfectly, it will be those who did what it took to move forward. The leaders who take action, even those who do it imperfectly, will be much better placed than those who waited around weighing up options.
  3. Galvanise your team to do the same – You’re not an army of one. It’s also not time to be a hero. Get your team, support network, mentors, etc all clear on where you’re going and helping you on the way. If you need more time at work (virtual or otherwise), let the family know and get them supporting you. Focused, unified action wins.

When you’re feeling like things are rough (most days at the moment, aye?), picture that bad@ss buffalo and move forward.

Be sure to share this with someone you know who can use the help and focus.

You’ve got this, I’m here to help.

Want to binge on more blog bad@ssery?

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