My job is one of the mostÂ challengingÂ (and most fun) I’ve had in a long time. Â A turnaround is a lotÂ likeÂ a startup,very fast paced, very risky, and occasionallyÂ terrifying. There are times when it seems like too much. When I feel aÂ littleÂ overwhelmed, I try one three points-of-view that help me gain perspective, and get back in the game.
1.Â BrazilianÂ Soap Opera
A turnaround is a time ofÂ intenseÂ change, good and bad… and sometimes just surprising. Â For some people this can be tough, asÂ personnelÂ and business models get refined (andÂ sometimesÂ removed). So when things happen like the co-president suddenly resigns, we inherit an entire business division, or we hire the genius who reinvented Red Bull’s brand, Â I just say, “Well at least Mike Jones’ evil clone didn’t come back fromÂ theÂ dead.”
With a soap opera, you look forwardÂ toÂ everyÂ twist and turn, you aren’t afraid of it. Â Change is fun! Remember, weÂ loveÂ drama, Vonnegut told us so!
2. Video Game
IÂ thinkÂ this POV Â can help anyone in a fast-paced job. Rather than succumb to stress, just treat it like a video game. Nicole Lazaro has a taxonomy of fun, that includes “fiero” or “hard fun” which is the joy we feel when we triumph over adversity. When you are on level 28, and the aliens are coming down too fast and you only have two lives left… well isn’t that when you have 100 emails on a chain about a potentially broken homepage takeover, you are at a demo of a new product that just crashed in front ofÂ theÂ c-levels, Â and you get a call from an SVPÂ aboutÂ a 2M dollarÂ opportunityÂ but it’s dueÂ Wednesday? I say bring it!
3. The Lab
Lots of us live our lives in Â fear of action. What if I make the wrong call, what if I confront this person and they get upset, what if, what if… what if your job was a lab? And you are a scientist, all cool and observant. Now go ahead, and make a decision. observe. note. measure. and from the results, make a better decision next time.Â NervousÂ aboutÂ a new feature? release in an AB test, and measure.You are afraid of confronting a colleague that you disagree often with? Try a new style such as being more blunt, or admitting it’s hardÂ toÂ talk to the them because they are soÂ aggressive, or passive. Â Measure.
Work often becomes too much about you and who you are, and it can keep you fromÂ sleepingÂ at night, worrying and wondering. But if you can get aÂ littleÂ perspective, you can stay clear headed and make better decisions. Try one of these POV’s yourself.