Learning From a Different Place – Part 19
David Freund, Chief Leadership Officer

I am sure you have heard the phrase, “timing is everything,” and it truly is. The Law of Timing is Law #19 in John Maxwell’s 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership. It’s a law that sounds simple but can be very difficult to apply. The difficulty comes from a need to balance intuition with data.

Let me first share a personal application of this law. Several years ago, I would have told you that my plan would have been to begin growing my executive coaching business, Navigate Leadership, throughout 2022. I knew what I wanted, and my plan was very sound, but The Law of Timing was beginning to unfold in my life. At the same time, Randy Wolken had a vision for MACNY and saw a very time-sensitive opportunity. In June of 2015, Randy Wolken approached me about joining MACNY. This didn’t fit with my plan. The time frame felt like it was seven years too early. Data wasn’t going to help me on this one. The timing was everything, and I needed to recognize the opportunity and adjust my plan.

In his book, John identifies two areas that need to be cultivated in our leadership if we are to grow through The Law of Timing. Those areas are how we respond to failure and engaging in future plans. Here are some of my favorite questions:

Failed Initiative Questions

  • What was the goal of the initiative?
  • What factors were taken into account before we started?
  • Who was leading the initiative?
  • Whose experience did the initiative draw upon?
  • What were the market or industry conditions at the time?
  • Might the initiative have been successful if we had started it earlier or later?

Preparation Questions

  • Do you have a firm grip on the situation?
  • Are your motives right?
  • Can you initiate action with confidence and win people’s trust?
  • Have you drawn upon the wisdom and expertise of others to inform your strategy?
  • Have you done everything you must to set your team up for success?

When we begin to cultivate these two areas in our leadership, The Law of Timing will pay big dividends for us, our teams, and our organization. Timing is everything, so let’s work to grow in this key area.