The most important step toward achieving your vision today might not be on your “to do” list

I had the privilege to spend some time in Aspen Colorado this week meeting with some influential leaders that have an amazing vision for their organization. I was truly inspired and immediately stepped into “doing what I do” and started helping them break that vision into small experiments with hypothesis that could be evaluated and iterated on. It was easy to start coming up with tactical next steps to test their ideas and get fast feedback cycles, but as we talked more about the broader need to get them as leaders into a more strategic position and pass the tactical execution onto a mixed team of paid and volunteer staff we found one of the key things they needed to do now is begin investing in that team, helping them unleash their talents, creativity and engagement.

As you spend time working independently or for an organization to achieve a vision with real purpose don’t forget your primarily contribution may not be in the tactical things you put on your to do list, but rather be found in the people you develop. While it’s exciting to develop a list of next steps and to see incremental progress checking those off the list, you’ll likely find that you become your own limiting factor. When you instead make your first priority developing those around you, you’ll find there’s a potential to experience true synergy with an inspired group that knows far fewer limitations. It may be that the most impactful step forward you can take today is to put the to do list to the side, pause and first ask “how can I use today to develop the talents of the people around me?”

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