Slip-Ups: Leadership SHIFT Tip

Several years ago I was preparing for a sales meeting as the new National Sales Director. It was a promotion that exceeded my original career aspirations. So naturally, I wanted things to go perfectly. 

Sadly, just two days before the meeting, my father-in-law lost his battle with Alzheimer's disease. I didn't know what to do. Should I honor my wife and family or show up for my "critical" meeting? I was stuck and didn't see any good options.   

I went to the meeting, but it didn't feel right. My head and heart were somewhere else. The stress made it difficult to practice my presentation. So I decided to wing it. 

For the record, winging it doesn't work.

My presentation was terrible. 

My new team had no way of knowing the stress and conflict that I carried up to the stage that day. Hey, I certainly gave them my desired different leadership vibe, but just with a little too much "oh, snap."

After the presentation, I wanted to escape and hide until the end of the meeting.  

For the record, hiding doesn't work either.  

My accident recovery taught me that we are defined by how we respond to our slip-ups. So, I took a P.A.U.S.E. to make a shift. 

  • P: Pause, Breathe and Reflect
  • A: Acceptance
  • U: Understanding
  • S: Strike a Pose, Say an Affirmation
  • E: Engage Again

Failures happen to everyone. When they do, we can become our worst boss. My pause helped me see a new perspective because things are never as terrible as we first believe. 

Life and careers can shift in a moment. How do you wish to respond? That is your first question.
Have Fun Storming the Castle!

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