Working through plans A-Z

I recently spoke to someone I met thanks to this blog about his hopes of making a career transition to a company in a different location. He had his thought process nicely laid out. I think my only value add to his process was asking him what plans B, C and D were.

I think of nearly everything I do in terms of projects. Some projects last a long time while others are shorter. And, over the past few years, I’ve had various career related projects involving attempted switches of companies, functions and locations. Some of these involved nested projects – e.g. going to graduate school to make the location change process easier or involved sorting immigration issues. Some of these projects worked. Some didn’t.

Every time I reflect on this journey (and speaking to him definitely made me reflect on it) and find myself thinking about the journey ahead, I am reminded of the quote – “If plan A doesn’t work, remember there are 26 letters in the alphabet.”

That quote has been very representative of how my journey has unfolded. Plan A has rarely worked. But, I’ve done my best to work through plans B, C, D and so on.

Just this morning, I learnt that a project I’d been working on for a while didn’t work out. It is, without question, a bummer. But, going through the process taught me a lot. I was grateful for the incredible support I received from many wonderful folks through the process and felt I’d given it my best shot. It is a reminder that there’s a lot outside our control and that that good processes don’t always lead to good results in the short run.

But, as I look back to the past decade, I feel confident about the long run effect giving processes you commit to your best shot. And, I’ve also learnt that a key part of running a good process is making sure you are preparing for and working through plans A-Z.

On days like this, I feel grateful for having the privilege to write here. There are the days when the tag line of this blog – “Never failure, only learning” – comes to life. It reminds me that we never know if a good day is a good day. All we can do is keep plugging away.

And, I definitely intend to do that.