Focusing on a process

When we started working on “The Real Leaders Project” as a team 2 years ago, we set ourselves this lofty (or so it felt at that time) goal – we would publish an interview every 2 weeks and we would aim to interview people that inspired us. I don’t think we knew what we were doing and I guess there’s a certain beauty in setting goals when you have no idea what you’re committing to.

The first year was a real struggle – we were always scrambling, always late, and seemingly always in crisis. We were so much in crisis that it didn’t occur to us that we must make a website of our own. We used to just publish our interviews on this blog. But, we were beginning to secure interviews. And, most importantly, these interviews inspired us and helped us share the inspiration with others too.

We had many limiting beliefs then – especially whether we would be able to interview people without having some connection (online or real world) to them. Gradually, we got the hang of this. The second year got better much quickly – we soon realized that the biggest secret to getting into the calendars of those who inspired us was good natured persistence. Don’t take rejection personally and don’t hesitate to ask until you hear no. (This process was infinitely easier if you knew someone personally of course.. but that list was short.)

2 months into the new year, I realize I am a LOT more comfortable this year than I was last year. And why? Process – that’s it. I have a straight forward process – every weekend, I write to 5 people I’d like to interview. Typically, this is a mix of adding 2 new folks on the list and following up with 3 from previous weeks. We started the year in apparent crisis following our break in December but I reminded myself that I knew better – trust the process and results will follow. And they did. That’s not to say this process will hold us in good stead till the end of time – things change and processes need to adapt as well.

But, one of my bigger learnings over these past few years is to focus a lot of energy into developing good processes. We run large parts of our life on auto-pilot and it’s important we work intentionally on these habits. You might get the odd sequence of results that don’t go your way.. but a thought through and well executed process is a fantastic long term ally.