One of my clients shared with me that 10 years ago he thought about combining water and vitamins as a great way of killing two birds with one stone. Have you ever had an idea, sat on it, only to see that product or service take-off in the marketplace at a later date? This week’s podcast is with Gene Hayden the author of The Follow-Through Factor – Getting From Doubt to Done . Gene identified a number of key reasons why we struggle with taking action, and some practical ways to deal with these challenges.
Follow-through is a key issue, whether it relates to dealing with your taxes, following up on a job lead or dealing with a career change. So what is follow-through? I like how Gene describes it: “Making a deal with yourself to pursue your goal. The iron-clad promise to yourself is stronger than any obstacle.” We generally don’t lack the knowledge of what to do, but we do have a number of thoughts that come into our heads once we decide to pursue a goal. Gene calls these the “yes but obstacle course…”
Yes, but I don’t believe in myself.
Yes, but I don’t know if my project is right for me.
Yes, but I have five ideas and all of them are great.
Yes, but I’m not sure this is my passion.
Yes, but I don’t have a clue how to proceed.
Yes, but I’m afraid.
Yes, but I don’t have the time, energy or money.
Yes, but I can’t find a mentor.
Yes, but what if I fail?
The top 3 reasons why people drop their ideas, according to Gene, are:
- Loss of passion
- Not enough money
- No time
All of us at times lack desire, money, and time with the things we are excited about. Are those challenges an excuse? or, have we not come up with a creative way to resolve those issues?
Gene suggested 3 key questions that will help you to following-through despite anything:
- What is the story you want to tell to yourself and to others? Example, when you follow up with a hiring manager and they decide to interview you what could be the result of that action?
- What is it about this story that resonates with me? This question is really about the “why.” Why do you really want to follow up?
Bonus idea – Reward yourself! Decide on a reward system for having the courage to take action. One of our clients would buy himself an song on iTunes every time he arranged an informational interview.
Long story short, my client didn’t take action on this idea, but somebody else did. If you walk into any store you will see many choices of vitamin water, it was another person’s billion dollar idea. Gene stated, “Following-through is the only thing that separates dreamers from people that accomplish great things and it makes life a lot more interesting.” The world is full of great ideas, what’s yours? More importantly, what are you doing with it?
This week’s 60 Second Workout: Take one micro-action on something that you have been wanting to follow-through on.
This week’s CareerPoll : How confident are you in your business writing skills?
Results from last week’s CareerPoll : What is your greatest challenge when following through on opportunities?
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Taking action, along the road with you!
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