Where Are You?
David Freund, Chief Leadership Officer
Do you know where you want to be? Do you know who you want to become? These questions are critical. I can say with great certainty if you don’t know where you want to be, and you don’t know who you want to become, you will never get there. I read one report that said only three percent of people set goals. Another report noted that only eight percent of the people who set goals achieve them. If my math is correct, that means only .24 percent of us actually get to where we want to be and end up who we want to be. Wow, how sad. It seems clear to me that we have a lot of work to do in this area. Let’s just assume you do know where you want to be and who you want to become; the question then is, how do we get there? The answer: Proximity.
The key to getting where you want to go and being who you want to be is your proximity to those who are already there. This may sound simplistic, but it really works. In his book The Proximity Principle, Ken Coleman identifies the following three reflection questions:
- Who do I need to know?
- Where do I need to be?
- What do I need to start doing?
Let’s take a quick look at the second question. Where do I need to be? This answer is simple but does require effort and intentionality. You need to be in places and around people who are already where you want to be. Let me put it another way; if you are the smartest person in the room, you are in the wrong room. You can’t progress toward your goal if the people you are around can’t help you grow. You need to be in proximity to people who are five or ten years ahead of you.
These people will not be hard to find if you know where you want to be. When I discovered I wanted to grow my leadership skills, I was drawn to John Maxwell’s books. The books drew me to become certified as a coach and trainer. The certification drew me to attend training given by John and his team. Being in the room with these people who are ten years ahead of me and who continue to grow themselves ensures that I will always be growing and developing. Their experiences and mentoring are priceless.
If you would like to hear more about all three questions of The Proximity Principle, please join Marisa Norcross and me for Episode 202 of The Next Page podcast as we do a deeper dive into this simple and profoundly effective principle.