Life is full of surprises, opportunities and disappointments. Sometimes the most challenging part of the journey is the wait. Leadership is a lot like making soup or your favorite stew. You have a plan, add all the ingredients and then you slowly simmer the wonderful mixture of ingredients. The idea is to ensure that all the flavors blend together and they ultimately taste delicious. Did you add enough salt and pepper? Oregano, sage and other spices? Does it have the proper consistency? Should it cook a bit longer?
So may I ask….are you simmering in your leadership or are you at a rolling boil or not sure and you go back and forth? Are you truly adding the exact ingredients to ensure your teams’ success?
Being in the midst of various projects our leadership roles can become inconsistent as we rush through all the details (ingredients) and not focus on our teams working cohesively. Is everyone working from the same recipe and are they able to follow you with clarity? If they look you in the eye, will they ask, “Is it soup yet?”
There are times it is best to slow down (simmer) and evaluate where you are and how you are showing up. Take a moment and catch your breath. Big opportunities show up and timing is often critical. Questions and doubts may race through your mind as to whether you and team will be prepared to handle what lays ahead. Will we add one more ingredient to our workload or the wrong ingredient at the wrong time? Do we rush in (rapid boil) and answer immediately without (tasting) reviewing where we are relative to the final output?
Being in touch with your role as a leader will empower you to know exactly how to react to all situations when they arise. Knowing your individuals well, having open communication, investing your time to discover their unique talents will provide you with all of the ingredients to be a powerful leader. As with making a great tasting soup you must be engaged from the start to finish.
Remember the key ingredients of leadership…integrity, accountability, courage, passion and humility!
Go out and make the best soup for all those counting on you.