What are some ways that old dogs can learn new tricks?
- Run with the end in view. The end goal is a vision of where you're headed. Don't run to nowhere. Your end goal may change as you change and as the process evolves. But give yourself a picture that will motivate you to run when you feel like giving up!
- Make a plan. This is different than having the end goal in view. A plan helps you reach your goal. Many people fly through life from one thing to the next without ever pausing long enough to plan the next step. Making a plan (even a poor plan) is better than not planning at all!
- Ask for feedback. Inform someone else of your goal and your plan, and ask for feedback. Invite regular criticism to help strengthen your areas of weakness. When you receive the criticism, listen. Learn. Live. Listen. Learn. Live. Listen. Learn. Live. You get the idea. (It will help if this person is someone you trust highly.)
- Be prepared to get back up. Yes, you will fail. Be prepared to pick yourself up, wipe off your scrapes and bruises, and keep on moving. Don't let small setbacks equal categorical failure!
- Enjoy yourself. No, this isn't about having “fun” like watching cartoons. It's about having “fun” like a hard workout that really hurts but feels really good afterward. Let the exercise of improving yourself and improving your leadership be an enjoyable process.
Finally, make sure the shoe fits. If you hate what you're doing, then it really may be time to look somewhere else and learn some other new tricks. You might even need a whole new bag.
See part one of this post.