For me, there are many examples in life of what it means to be a leader. Those examples include times where failure isn’t an option. One example that comes to mind is coordinating any kind of get-together or event for friends or family. It’s a time to enjoy spending time with those you care about, but it’s also a great representation of leadership, life, and what it means to persevere.
As many of us know, planning any big get-together isn’t something you can plan last minute. Depending on how big of a celebration you have planned, it can take weeks of planning and preparation for the event, even if you’re not hosting the event yourself. The projects you take on in leadership are similar in this way. Many times, you’re coordinating a project for multiple people, and it takes planning and preparation to pull it all off successfully.
As you’re preparing for the get-together, there’s a lot of room for error. Accidents happen. The meal may not always work out perfectly or the events you have planned may not go according to plan, but you have to persevere. Failure isn’t an option – you can’t just not provide food! Cancelling plans isn’t an option, and even if it’s chaotic and stressful, we find a way to make do with what we have. This is a great metaphor for both life and leadership. You have to fight through whatever the challenges are and work with what you’re given.
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Once the day of your big event arrives and you’re surrounded by family and friends, it’s a time to cherish the love and warmth of genuine time with everyone. Sure, it may not be absolutely perfect by your standards. But when you think about that day, it’s more about the company you’re spending your time with. Maybe one day, your burnt rolls will be a topic of light-hearted laughter intermixed with fond memories.
So when you have a lot on your shoulders, when you have really high expectations for yourself…and something goes awry, it’s time to push through. It’s time to see the beauty in imperfection, learn from your mistakes, and persevere. No matter what.