"No... I'm good... I've got it... I can take it from here."

I suppose I simply want to pose this question... "Considering you didn't know how to do it in the first place and needed help, why would you believe you know what to do next?" The question isn't to anyone in particular — although I suspect you may have asked or been asked this question in one form or another. (Or at the very least, thought it of asking it).


I don't mean for this to be a harsh question or suggest that professional or personal development doesn't have you step into the unknown sometimes with nothing more than the sheer will to succeed. Maybe I'm simply struggling to understanding why a person(s) who didn't recognize there was a problem in the first place, didn't know how to develop a plan (and by extension the activities to implement the plan), would believe that all of a sudden they had the ability to deal with what comes next. 

Is it an issue of self-awareness, simple pride, or the old adage "you don't know what you don't know"? Being it's a human condition I suspect it's something rather complicated. What I do know is that even under the best circumstances it's difficult to get things done, and that's before you add in considerations like capability, competency and council. 

Capability, competency and council... important considerations to reflect on — particularly "self reflection".

  • Do you have the capability to do what needs to be done? It is very difficult to understand and admit what you can and cannot do (or be). Sadly not everyone can be a rock-star, a CEO, or a rocket scientist — although remember, there are all kinds of other fulfilling things that you will be capable of doing.
  • Do you have the competencies (or skills) you need? Do you know what your skills are, and have you aligned them with what needs to be accomplished? Do you know what you still have to get better at?
  • Do you have a council (or network) in place that can help you with the above, as well as make your thinking and actions better (let alone right)?

I can't help but come back to self-awareness... self-awareness of your own capability, self-awareness of what you're good at (and what you need to get better at), and the self-awareness that you don't know everything and you need people's help.

I very much include myself in all of this.


"Give me a chance and I will show you"... wait, that's not it.

The following is the original and the rewrite can be found by clicking here.

This may ultimately just become a semantical mess, but hey, let's just take a bit of a chance here and see what we get - And no, the irony will not be lost on me.

 A while back I was reminded of the time a group of colleagues and myself became involved in a hearty discussion regarding the saying, "Give me a chance and I will show you" (or its various iterations) that ask you to do something despite an uncertain outcome or unpredictable result... all based on an "unknown reassurance that it will all work out".  As the discussion finally came to an end, the consensus around the table seemed to be that the saying was simply backwards, and should be, "If I show you, can you give me a chance".

Wordsmithing the original saying inherently minimized risk, addressed the air of entitlement that sometimes can come with the request, and illustrates a proactiveness required when asking someone to make a decision that involves chance. We parted ways comfortable in the knowledge that yet again we had solved one of the worlds more challenging problems.

But the question now becomes, "What does 'If I show you, can you give me a chance' look like?" You can't simply walk away from the table with a smug, knowing air of satisfaction and not tell anyone... well I guess you can, but that really isn't very constructive.

  • Understand the chances you are looking for - There are an infinite number of chances in this big ol' world of ours available to you, so to be practical, you need to narrow down the ones you are interested in.
  • Understand your competencies - In its simplest form, this refers to your ability to do something successfully or efficiently. Effective written communication is an easy example.
  •  Alignment of your competencies with the chances you may be looking for and vice versa - This will allow you to identify competency gaps that may impact your ability to be given a chance or even identify chances your current competencies my afford you. As an example, if you want to be given the chance to start a career in sales these are the competencies you would need to develop or show an aptitude towards... increasing your "ability to be given a chance"
    • Planning
    • Territory/Customer Management
    • Selling Skills and Knowledge
    • Product Knowledge
    • System Knowledge
    • Business Cadence
    • Business Acumen
    • Financial Performance  
  • Develop the competencies that will afford you the chances you are looking for - Many competencies will be common to many types of chances but some my be very specific, which comes back to understanding the chances you are looking for.

And finally, with the competency foundations set, the aspect of illustration or "If I show you" can come into play, which is, more than any other time in history, easy to set in motion - Thank you Internet:

  • Want to illustrate your understanding of concepts and competencies write a blog.
  • Want to illustrate your ability to communicate and show leadership create a video blog series.
  • What to illustrate your personal brand, concepts of planning and execution, develop a web site and utilize the appropriate social media channels to illustrate your competencies.
  • Take on projects outside your current roles and responsibilities or join a charity to develop needed competencies, as well as develop content for your above activities.

And if you are not sure how to get started, just "Google it" or go to YouTube and watch all kinds of people illustrating their competencies.

Reducing the "unknown reassurance that it will all work out" comes with showing your competencies up front and it's also a tangible illustration you can make things happen - And that's what people really want when they give someone a chance.