Have you ever met someone like Shawn? I met Shawn in leadership development program I was coaching. The group was stuck on a team-building activity that seemed impossible to get done in the time frame that would net them the most points.
Shawn spoke up. “This is doable,” he began. The team wasn’t convinced so he continued. “Two years ago, I only had an eighth-grade education. I’ve learned that if there is something I want, I put my mind to it and focus on on it, I can reach my goals. We can do this.”
Shawn earned his GED in 2009 and and was promoted to a supervisory level in 2011. He already had goals established for the next level he wants to achieve.
During a break, I talked to him more about his journey to overcome his difficult circumstances. He said, “There’s so much to the story, so many things I’ve overcome that I didn’t share. I’m not finished yet with what I want to do. Next I want to get my college degree.”
Shawn didn’t start out his career with the credentials, tools and education that most of us have. He does have spirit, heart, courage and focus and a passionate willingness to learn. And he also asks a lot of questions and actively engages with mentors that support him.
Shawn believes that what he wants to achieve is doable. He rallied his teammates and they accomplished their goal because he had a vision it could be done.
The next time you are faced with a challenge that doesn’t seem like it can be solved according to your parameters and what you think is possible, I encourage you to think of Shawn and remind yourself that it is doable.
Then your job is to ask yourself, “How is this doable?” – not ‘is this doable?’ Be prepared for creative solutions to emerge and forge ahead knowing that a good solution is possible.