We all have those moments when we feel that we’ve been physically hit by a storm in our working lives. A project has gone horribly wrong or a key resource betrays your team. You know what I mean - you feel horribly nauseous and there’s a prickly uncomfortable heat that starts to spread around your body.
What can we do that unlike Ciara, can minimise the disruption and devastation?
First of all you have to take action. Burying your head in the sand at this point will cause you a huge headache in the long run. Take a few deep breaths and objectively assess what the situation is. Purely look at the facts (leave how you’re feeling out of it - I know it’s hard) and write down what your possible options are at this point.
Secondly, talk the situation through with a trusted advisor. This could be a coach, mentor or team member but an alternative view on the situation might offer the exact solution you need. It’s okay to sometimes not have all the answers ourselves. Vulnerability is not a weakness, the fact that you’re able to recognise the problem and not hide it is a strength in itself.
Thirdly, utilise your network. Do you know someone who can help? Has a supplier let you down but you have a contact who uses a different supplier. Do you know someone who works on a different project team that can help with a different resource. There will be someone out there who will at least be able to give you some useful information so don’t discount this and don’t be afraid to ask. The alternative could be far worse.
Lastly, be tenacious. This may make you feel horribly uncomfortable but keep going until there’s a positive outcome. Stepping out of our comfort zone is a difficult feeling (I definitely know this) but ask yourself this - you’re feeling uncomfortable enough already, could this step forward make you feel less so in the long run? Is it worth the initial discomfort to make the long term gain? Take small steps but keep going until the situation is resolved.
Developing a growth mindset and building resilience will completely transform how you weather a storm. Sheryl Sandberg said ‘You are not born with a fixed amount of resilience. Like a muscle, you can build it up, draw on it when you need it. In that process you will figure out who you really are—and you just might become the very best version of yourself’. Seeing failure (if you have failed) as part of the journey and something to be learned from will help diminish that hot prickly feeling and help you to see what you could do differently next time.
After Ciara, comes storm Dennis. Will you be ready?