If you take some time to listen to business leaders talk about their journey of business startup through growth and success, somewhere in their story they will inevitably state that they finally had to stop holding onto everything and let their team perform. It is likely stated in a variety of ways but in one form or another the leader had to stop fearing and start trusting.
We can all relate to this simple but extremely difficult understanding of letting people go in order to grow not only themselves but to contribute to growing the organization. The idea is very straight forward but is riddled with may complications along the path. We need to start by separating fear and challenges.
When we deal with fear, we are directly addressing an internal state of ourselves not having some degree of confidence, understanding, knowledge, skills, or some aspect which we believe if known would take the fear away. The biggest navigation of fear for some of us is we do not even know or cannot put our finger on what the actual fear is which is holding us back. So, we are fearing an unknown fear. As President Roosevelt stated, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” This fear holds each of us back from our true potential. The reality is that there will always be fear which internally you can conger up some fictitious story in your mind to validate. The difference is your choice to either confront the story to change the story or be compressed by the fear the story crafts.
To help in this mind shift, move fears into challenges. Challenges are external and can take on more than just a mental story. Challenges have tangible elements which fears typically do not. So as a leader you may fear the failure of a decision to promote a particular individual because there is the possibility, they will make mistakes or miss something important and now additional problems arise and additional costs etc. To overcome the fear of the decision, shift to viewing this as a challenge of helping to build a solid leader of the future. Identify those aspects which must be focused on and invest the necessary time, energy, and resources to enable the person to be as best prepared and capable as possible. By doing these tangible things you move away from the fear and keeping proper perspective on what challenges might be ahead.
Additionally, you must become comfortable and confident in trusting yourself. If you are second guessing your decision and did not take the necessary steps to put a solid framework in place for future success, then just maybe you should be fearful. Not of your decision to promote but fearful you did not take the time nor resources to insure the best outcomes.
Another thing successful leaders will also reference in their stories of the path they took to success is the number of times they failed, fell flat on their face but picked themselves up and moved on. These challenges did not instill fear in them but identified key learning events to avoid in the future as they came up against future challenges. This week as you continue to grow your business, ask yourself if you are in a mental state of fear or are you working from a place of navigating challenges.
Need a Promise Guide to help in the navigation of your growth? We can help you be the very best you can be! Reach out to JKL Associates at (313) 527-7945 in Michigan or (407) 984-7246 in Florida.