Wisdom, Advice and Patience

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Wisdom, Advice and Patience

This past February, my coach gave me some advice that, though I hated to hear, I needed.

You see, we had just implemented our new board, and we committed to being aggressive on hiring new staff.

Of course, I was ready to blow the doors out of the water in 2013. But, my coach knew something that obviously I did not. Now, don’t get me wrong, we have grown a lot; we may actually double our total revenue from 2012 in 2013.

That is exciting — but, I’m really just never satisfied. Ever 🙂

Heartbreaking News For An Entrepreneur

Here is the devastating news that my coach told me:

“Chris, 2013 is going to be a really good year for Help One Now. But 2014 is going to be a breakout year if you implement this plan and execute on a daily basis. You will build momentum in ways you never thought possible.”

After that, I had a mini breakdown; after all, it was only February. 2014 seemed like a million years away.

It’s hard to tell an entrepreneur that it’s going to be a good year. Good = vanilla, boring, average, whatever. Good are the companies Jim Collins talks BADLY about, because they are not great.

I’m driven to be great. I just can’t help it.

We were taking massive risks and I wanted immediate growth, Now hear me out — the growth that we wanted was needed to keep up with our work to help empower leaders, care for kids and see communities transformed.

Wise People Seek And Listen To Wisdom

This is why we all need coaches and advisors who will help us process REALITY and not live the world of make-believe. Dreamers and entrepreneurs love this world, but we need people to tell us the hard things in life that are true.

Here is the value that my coach gave me: whenever we were having a slow month, when it was harder than I thought to get all the staff up and running, when I wanted everything to go faster and I felt like I was in quicksand — I would remind myself that 2013 was going to be good, but, we are focused on building for 2014 and beyond. I had to be patient and focus on the long term health, not short term metrics.

Again and again, those words kept me going when I wanted to panic, when I was dealing with the complexities of global development work, partnerships, finances, system implementation.

The Future Is Near

It’s October — 2014 is coming. The activities that we are working on today are so beyond what we could have imagined when I met with my coach.

I can’t wait to reveal them and I can’t wait to see how much of an impact that is made because of them. It has taken almost 10 months of excruciating implementation. And in those moments, I hung on to my coach’s words of wisdom.

There is no doubt that it takes time to do work that is memorable, work that will last, work that creates results like the Legacy Project or Ferrier Village.

Good is good, but great is better. Only time will tell, but I’m thankful for advisors who taught me to be patient and focus on long term effectiveness and scale, not short term excitement, which can be so deceiving.

Who do you have in your life that cares enough to tell you the hard things that will help you accomplish great work?

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About The Author

I’m the Founder/CEO of Help One Now. I live in downtown Raleigh with my family. I’m a justice advocate, who loves empowering leaders (and tribes) to launch movements for doing good.

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