Our journey’s are not always clear cut or obvious. I know you might think that’s a strange thing for me to say as I am a very big advocate of setting bold goals, laying the path and setting your own destiny.
But, whilst that is true, sometimes opportunities just present themselves to us, especially when we set ourselves with an upward trajectory. I know this from my own experience, having on many occasions, found opportunities present themselves that I wasn’t expecting.
For example I went for a job to be Project Manager to run a $10m, during the interview, my future manager said “Gordon I want to change the interview, I don’t think this is the right job for you” . As you can imagine my heart sunk, I was so keen on the job.
Then he said to me “We have a Program that’s in trouble, this is a very big program multiple projects, multiple countries, $100m budget, and I think you’d be the ideal candidate for that, would you be interested”.
I was stunned, because not only was it no something I was expecting, but it was also something I would never have applied for, seeing it as beyond my capabilities at the time.
Of course, I said “yes, I’d be very interested”.
But I didn’t think I was ready, it wasn’t something that I saw as a next step got me, but sometimes we have to embrace these opportunities, as you never know when they might come along.
We are all capable of more than we think, and we should look to embrace these opportunities, especially when someone else sees something in us, as we can sometimes be our own biggest critics or inhibitors.
The biggest example for me would definitely be my writing. It was something I had never done before. Never thought I would be any good at, and I finally decided to do it because I just wanted to write down my thoughts and I found it cathartic.
I never expected to write as much as I did, neither did I expect to write for some of the biggest platforms in the world. In fact if you told me I’d write for Forbes, Inc, Entrepreneur, etc., I would have told you you were crazy.
But when the opportunities came I embraced them. Did I think I was good enough? No! Did I think I was ready? No! But I decided to do it.
We never know what is outside out comfort zones, or what life could have in store for us, because we never know what we are truly capable of.
As leaders, it’s our role to help people to see that potential in others. To encourage them, to support them, to cheer them.
As leaders, it can often be our role to be role models in embracing the unexpected, to seize the opportunity, to not only take the challenge but to rise to the challenge.
Many of the things I have achieved in life have surprised a lot of people, but more importantly, they have also surprised me.
I don’t think I am unique or special. I think that a lot of these achievements comes from my willingness to embrace the unexpected, to take things and run with them and I would encourage everyone else to do so. It’s ok to be afraid, big goals/opportunities should be a little scary, because if there not then