When’s the last time you did something for the first time?

By Karen Albritton, Partner at Thinc Strategy

I’ve been inspired by this line from a Darius Rucker song for some time now. Without going overboard, I challenge myself, from time to time, to do something I’ve never done before.  My most recent challenge was completing an indoor mini triathlon. When I told a friend what it entailed, a 20-minute swim, 20-minutes on the bike and 20 minutes on a treadmill, he said, “Oh that’s easy.” Maybe he felt that way but considering I hadn’t been in a pool since last summer and had never done any of these activities back-to-back, I didn’t feel that way. 

His comment gave me pause as I reflect on business leaders that we work with at Thinc. They are repeatedly doing things for the first time and many times it’s not easy. Of course, we all found ourselves in this position during the pandemic, pivoting with the many changes, adapting, and responding. Leaders who are steadily growing their business, year after year are running a business that’s larger than it’s ever been. Every year is a new set of circumstances and opportunities. Most of these leaders are constantly striving to elevate their business, developing new products or services, piloting new processes, or acquiring other firms.

How do these leaders continue to succeed at new things? Often, they seek out someone with experience as a guide. In my situation, I had two friends who completed the triathlon the year prior and were willing to share the run-down on what to expect and how to prepare. This is similar to the role we have established with our clients, by offering our consulting services, providing them with our own experience, plus the knowledge we’ve gleaned from working with similar clients.

Another observation about the leaders we work with is that they are rigorous at preparing. They do their homework. This may be in the form of due diligence for an acquisition or long-term strategic plan to ensure that they have developed a roadmap for the success of their business.

The final step is commitment. They know things don’t always go as planned, but that doesn’t stop them. They execute on their plans, learning and adapting, just as we’ve all done over the past two years.

So, when’s the last time you did something for the first time? We’d love to hear about it.

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