Sometimes you have to be careful what you say and in my case careful what you type. On my maiden blog for the year I ended it by stating that a part of my planning is being open to change, being open to God guiding my steps. I even quoted Proverbs 16:9 “A man’s heart plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Me and my big fat keyboard! I think God looked down at me and said, “Let’s see how serious you are about what you just typed, Cortez.”
The next morning a key player on my team gave their resignation. I felt a myriad of emotions in the moment. I was sad, angered, confused and disappointed all at the same time. It made for a rough week with thoughts and emotions bouncing around in my head and heart. I was constantly asking the question why or what I could have done to keep them. They were a big part of my plan, but maybe not God’s plan for me. Then I also had to think that maybe I wasn’t in God’s plan for them either. I’ve said in the past I’d rather someone follow their path than stay where they don’t feel led to. People’s paths divert over time and sometimes they cross again. Ultimately, at the end of the week we reconnected, cleared the air and I let them know we were good. When I expressed this I felt a sense of peace come over me. I tend to hold onto things and avoid the “critical conversations” as they are called. I am a very practical person and if the conversation won’t serve a practical purpose then it shouldn’t be had. I’ve had to broaden my definition of practical over the years. It’s practical to forgive, it’s practical to seek answers and let emotions be known (with care).
I describe this blog as my journey of growing business and kids. I was planning on a post about the kids this week but then sometimes material presents itself. This post is less about what happened and more about the things I learned over that past week.
1. Lean into your team and surround yourself with good people.
I can’t express the details of what we were working on, but it was something I started penning last July. I formulated a plan and it was about to get implemented in the next few weeks to months. This was definitely a speed bump, but not a road block. I held onto to the phrase that God’s delays are not God’s denials. Over the next few days I had some great conversations with a few team members that opened doors to ideas that may make the plan better than I imagined. There are people on your team who will really be there for you when you need them. Good friends will be there to hear you out and snap you back into focus. Lean on your family and those you can share with freely and get support from. They will remind you that you are more than your setbacks. One thing my coach does for me is to remind me of my past success and the obstacles I’ve overcome in the past. These reminders are key to getting through current situations.
2. Keep your pity party short
Last year my wife and I attended Buffini and Company’s Mastermind event as we have the past seven years. One of the speakers was the amazing Walter Bond. If you ever get the chance to see him, do it. He discussed when life gives you setbacks allow yourself a pity party, but only for a specified period of time and then move on. I’ve been practicing this for a while in my business. I used to sulk for days when a deal went bad. I would lose confidence and begin to doubt myself. As I grew my business I gave myself twenty-four hours to sulk and eventually when I became a broker I gave myself a few hours to have a pity party. Being a leader meant I had to get back on track quicker. I can’t let my bad moments affect the office too much. Bond said no more than a two day pity party for big stuff. This week I gave myself two days and let another key player know I had two days. When I got into day three and four she said “no more, lets move forward.” We had a long chat which helped get me back on track. What I had to realize is that the doubt and distress I was letting in was self induced. My perception of things may not be the realty of things. I have used those doubts as fuel to rewrite my goals and shift some things around.
3. Process, question and uncover
I think I’ve used the word “process” dozens of times over the past week. My wife would look at me and ask if I was okay. I would simply say, “I’m just trying to process everything.” There is all the chaos of normal business activities, the implementation of plans, and interviews for another position. Lots to process plus my mind was still working dealing with my heart and head. I began to ask questions of why I was feeling certain things and what caused them. I started to realize that this key player had brought some certain elements to our office that had previously been missing. The good thing is I now know what to look for in future hires and the talents I need to locate in my current team. The same was true mid-summer when I had to make my first termination. I discovered what puzzle pieces fit and don’t fit. Finding the right personality, energy, and temperament fits are highly important in your office. Finding the people that mesh well with you will bring out the best in everybody. That’s what most business owners want to have, a place that brings out the best in each other.
This was not the blog post I had planned for today and my week definitely didn’t go the way I expected! While things were not what I wanted, I learned some lessons that I wouldn’t have otherwise. Whether this is divine interaction or a human created event I know that all things work out for good for those who trust God. If I’m a man of my word and, more specifically, my typed words I must believe that it will work out as His plan is greater than mine.