Think about your job title. When did you land that position? And what month are you in that process?
For those of you not quite at the executive or senior level, this is for you.
And trust me, I’m right there with you.
I’m the self-proclaimed CEO of Hurricane. But I’m not. I am whatever the company needs me to be. And sometimes, that’s the janitor.
When I exited a full-time job, my boss pardoned me with this advice:
“It’s going to take you 18 months to get where you want to be. That’s true here or wherever you end up one day.”
Now of course you may stay in your current position for more than 550 days. Some stay for years. Factors in and out of our control both delay and expedite our journeys.
About 2.5 times through this cycle, I can say that after 18 months, you’re ready for another position or increased responsibilities in your current role.
The initial 36 months included signing a lease to our first office, hiring the company’s first full-time employee, and starting a new LLC. I also transitioned from receiving a paycheck to earning my own, living at home to living on my own, and affording my own healthcare after being without it.
But I want to take a closer look at my current trip through the cycle. It started in October 2014 when our company lost its first full-time hire to another job opportunity. That person served as the company’s General Manager – enabling me to focus on new ventures while offering consistency in our established market.
The first six months: (Oct ’14 – April ’15)
Exhausting. Think about any new start: You’re learning, evolving, adjusting, transitioning in your professional career all the while trying to keep yourself sane. You want to impress your superiors, assess coworkers and establish yourself.
In a matter of weeks my job description evolved from ‘thinking big picture,’ to ‘let’s get through today.’
I relearned our system; I relearned our staff.
It’s not that I couldn’t take the pulse of our company in a single heartbeat.
But they had to get used to me being back in the driver’s seat whereas for two years, they had someone to manage their expectations.
I offered consistency and eliminated brashness from my portfolio.
In doing so, I focused on the core of our systems and processes and learned about frustrations that existed in all levels of the organization.
The first six months is the learning curve. And you shouldn’t really expect much more from yourself.
I finally exhaled in April.
Midway: (May ’15 through Oct ’15)
This is where I’m at right now. Nine months into redefining my role within my own company, I can see further again. I’m hitting my stride.
Our process still requires some refurbishing before I can let it fly a little looser, perhaps more automatically.
My senses are alert to my current role but aware of the future.
I earned new business for the first time in months.
I obsessed over our Q1 and Q2 numbers in order to predict what our business will look like in its next growth spurt.
I delegated tasks previously owned by the GM position to people in the company who deserve more responsibility and more opportunity.
I need to get them ready for what’s next.
Speaking of which, the last six months of the 18 month algorithm should be spent developing the ‘what’s next.’
I’ll share that with you next week.