Thursday, May 29, 2008

Attitude for lawyers: The bucks stop here.

I'm working with someone who has grown her business impressively by being very strategic about where she places her resources. She has a business plan, she has a framework to ensure her decisions are sound, she's persistent, her results have been solid- yet she recently put the brakes on a growth initiative.
Talking about why she did it, she said, "I suddenly realized that the buck stops here. It's all up to me. I'm afraid I'll fall on my face."

Have you ever felt like that?  I have. I'm pretty sure I will again. It's something that's going to happen now and then unless you have an enormous ego and a bank account to match.

Here's the conversation to have when you find yourself in that deer in the headlights situation:
  1. What's the absolute worst thing that can happen? (really)
  2. What have you already done to make sure this will be successful?
  3. Is there anything else you can do to be sure you'll be successful?
  4. Is there any other information that would help you know how successful you can expect to be? Anyone you can talk to for validation?
  5. Time for a reality check. How likely is it that the worst thing will happen?
  6. What is likely to happen? Based on what you know.
  7. How sure are you that it will turn out as you expect? (What are the odds?)
  8. Looking back at your experiences, are you a successful person? Are you able to set a goal and reach it? Are you good at planning? At getting things done?
  9. OK, stop, take a breath- now, given all of that, can you trust yourself to create your own success?
By then, you're ready to take action based on the facts, not on fear.

OH- the blog title? Well, if you think about how much real potential you have, the talents that got you through all of the challenges you've beaten so far- well hey! It's pretty damn exciting, what you're going to do! And the next time that phrase "the buck stops here" sneaks up- make a shift, change one word, and think, YES! The bucks stop here!

It's your business, your practice. You've got the responsibility, but you've also got everything you need to be successful, and you're going to keep the results.

Life is short. Struggle is optional.