So we just got done yesterday with our vet reviews with two very awesome Rockstar millennial vets! And after one year for each of them, this is the earliest we have ever pushed on two new grads to learn about leadership. The learning curve a new veterinary grad is on is steep like climbing Mount Everest, especially the first year. But the awesome aspect of our culture at this point, with it clean, crisp, full of trust, known high expectations, full of kindness, clearly transparent on all aspects including they can all have access to my email or whatever they like because there is nothing to hide, a trust of wills soaring, with attitudes fully agreed upon it is “not about me” mentality but “about AMC” and high levels of organizational health, is that we can push on this leadership front early than ever. We don’t have to just focus on everyday logistics and tactics, but we can push new young veterinary leaders to actually go beyond just learning deeper and more on veterinary medicine, as that is automatic for them, and press them with our expectations of actually studying leadership as well.
The reason we do this, is most “Professionals” often feel with extra initials behind their names, that automatically makes them a qualified and knowledgeable leader. But we have learned, and I fully experienced by 2007, that with DVM behind your name, one had no clue how to lead people. Matter of fact, we suck at it in the “growth” mode of a business or organization. As we find and experience, anyone can marginally lead an average or slow-moving organization, but those organizations that push hard where change occurs and growth creates chaos, we find our inherent abilities to lead are lacking and most leaders often are the problem. But once egos are set aside, and humility occurs often through experiences dropping one to their knees begging for help through the chaos, we find we are the solution.
The key aspect to understanding leadership is that “we are the lid”. The leader is the lid to their organization, and the organization can only “go as far as the leader grows”, as John Maxwell informs us. The Law of the Lid applies to us as we must “raise or lid”, through learning more on growing ourselves, growing our knowledge, and then taking action. If we don’t raise our lid, then we are the limiter of our organization’s success. And what becomes awesome in our organization, is that we are asking everyone to “raise their lid” because they are all leaders. They don’t even need initials behind their name to be a leader. They just need to self-improve and grow.
So, how do we have the time to self-improve or grow as leaders? “When do I have the time to do this!?” Did you know that people on this planet drive over 10 trillion miles a year? Americans drive 3 trillion miles a year! We have drive time, and some have lots of it. How are you using your drive time to grow? Or are you listening to the mind-numbing output of talk radio, news, weather, or music? My challenge to you is to use 25% of your drive time minimum, to “grow” yourself. We should all take 30 minutes of every single morning “for ourselves” before we get into the grind of the day with work, kids, emails, social media, errands, etc. Take 30 minutes! That’s it! Just 30 minutes every day, for yourself, and I challenge you to do it in self-improvement of mental power. There are thousands of podcasts focused just on you and your growth in any area of your life you like or there is “Audible” for listening to virtually any published book on any area of your life you want to put intentional focus on be it physical, mental, financial, social, spiritual, intellectual, or family. Take the 30-minute daily challenge for the next 90 days, and look up at the end of 90 to see where you are at! You will only go as far as you can grow! And your organization will only go as far as you grow!