I am in the beginning of a new job search. As part of the process, I have taken time this week to sort out my great accomplishments (why, yes, I do have a few!) from the rest of my professional experiences. And then, to take that process a step further and to harvest some of the important lessons I have learned.
My big lesson learned that I have been reflecting on today is taking “one step at a time.”
We don’t need to be on a tightrope to have this sage advice be relevant.
My tendency, when starting something new or dealing with major deadlines, has been to push hard and try to learn everything I need to know in a minute. Or, maybe five. But, no more than ten. Then to try to do everything at once!
Happily, I have discovered recently, that is changing.
For the last two months I have been the Interim Executive Director for a small nonprofit that is, sadly, closing its doors. While I have been working with the Board and community partners to close the programs and dissolve the corporation, the need for me to remember to take short, measured steps has been HUGE. Partners all want their reports done first. Creditors all want their bills paid first. But because I just came in at the 11th hour (actually about 11:58, to be exact), I need to GO SLOW and pay careful attention to the details because I don’t have the institutional memory or history that provides critical context. So, I have asked hundreds of questions, sometimes (often!) more than once! And, I need to remember to say thank you (often!) to those who support my slow and methodical approach, especially when they would have preferred to get their report yesterday!
I want to share proudly that I have been doing a pretty awesome job of taking one step at a time. Yup, I really did learn this important lesson.
And, as an added bonus, I am less stressed. More patient. More pleasant to be around! More efficient. And, better able to understand the relationships and connections between the moving parts of the reports, programs and the organization.
Wisdom for this Week: You are never to old to learn to take baby steps, even in your big girl shoes!