I have fish.
For around two years, it’s been two fish.
Until last week…
Then I had one.
After a two-day mourning period,
I decided my Nemo needed a friend.
I fell for two tiny Tetras.
At first, they kept their distance.
We can all a bit shy until we know the lay of the land.
Like a good boss, I onboarded them carefully.
Acclimatized them as per instructions.
But the next day, to my horror, the Tetras had disappeared.
Zero retention of my new recruits.
I looked all around the bowl, nothing.
I moved the plants, nothing.
There was only one possible explanation…
My Nemo ate the Tetras!
And that was my mistake.
Two days later, there they were.
Two Tetras swimming happily with my Nemo.
I felt guilty.
Turns out Tetras are excellent at hiding.
And it got me thinking how easy it is to jump to conclusions.
Don’t make that mistake.
No matter how much we know, no matter how much we think we’ve done our due diligence, there are always more leadership lessons to be learned.
If you’re a boss:
Beware your assumptions about others.
I wanted to punish my Nemo.
I wasn’t sure how.
Still, I didn’t feed my Nemo for those two days.
(Luckily we know that a hungry fish is a happy fish.)
Is it possible you’re unfairly treating people on your team?
Leadership is an individual game.
It’s your job to find out where each of your people want to go,
The skills they need to develop, and
Do what you can to help them get there.
It’s better to be an enabler than a punisher.
If you’re a Nemo:
Help your boss see you for who you really are and what you’re capable of.
I don’t mean brashly bragging.
I mean show her the results of your work.
Present the evidence, the metrics of your success instead.
For example, my Nemo wouldn’t simply brag that he has excellent people skills. He’d highlight that he has 100% retention rate of new recruits and that they stay with him until they retire. Now that’s way more compelling.
If you’re hiding your talents you won’t stand a chance.
At best, you’ll be overlooked.
At worst you’ll be misjudged and maligned, like my Nemo.
If you’re a Tetra:
This is your chance to make a great first impression.
Don’t disappear, no matter how uncomfortable you feel.
The idea is to start building positive relationships from the get go.
One way to take the pressure off you is to focus on the other person. How can you make her feel good?
Find ways to get her talking about herself.
Find out what bugs and what delights her (so you know what to do and not do).
Watch and observe.
You can’t do that when you’re out of sight.
If you sense you could do more enabling,
if you feel you’re being misjudged or maligned, or
if you know you’re hiding or holding back…
it’s time we talked.
How long are you going to dream and do nothing to make it your reality?
Where will you be in 12 months if you don’t start doing something differently today?
Start with a 30minute call with me. It’s complimentary.
I’ve opened up spots on my calendar this week to help you work out a plan to get your career to where you want it to be.
What are you waiting for? You’re not getting any younger.