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How Real Are You?

The first year I "wintered" my hibiscus was a complete experiment.

I did know that as a tropical plant it wouldn't survive plummeting temps on my patio, but I did NOT know if it would survive inside.

It dropped most of its leaves, but... it stayed alive and even revived the following summer.

So, last year, I knew what to expect.

Almost like clockwork: once inside, dropped leaves, but didn't die.

I'm expecting the same series of events this year.

However, this time around when I brought it inside last week it was with 14 buds that I'm hopeful will bloom.

One already did (see the picture above).

I'm doing everything I can to ensure the others will:

  • placed it in front of a window for maximum sun exposure

  • water it frequently

  • watched a YouTube video

You might argue it seems like a lot of work... just for a plant.

But for me, there's something about caring for a plant from year to year that is a beautiful reminder of what it means to be....real.

Things that are real require care, but they also produce rewards that are like none other.

And that is one reason I have the passion I do for helping people to continue their own growth... from year to year.

A big reward when people are growing... is that they're not the only ones enjoying their growth.

Everyone they:

  • work with

  • interact with

  • live with

are on the receiving end of that growth!

It's a pretty easy "sell" that developing people is good for business.

After all.... people are the ones who:

  • make sure the business is running like it should

  • come up with creative new ideas to try

  • can share their passion about the value the business brings to others

The harder "sell" is HOW do you really develop people?

What I continue to learn is that people are a lot like plants when it comes to keeping them growing and developing.

Because both are real.... with both:

  • environment matters

  • consistency matters

  • fueling matters

And I'll be real here....keeping track of those things (even for ourselves- let alone our team) requires time, energy and effort.

As a leader, it can feel like "one more thing," and quite honestly, can be easy to push aside as not really a priority.

The reality is... ignoring any one of those "things that matter" with people (or plants), in a best case scenario means less than optimal results and in a worst case scenario... could mean they quit producing, or even quit the team (die).

Today, I have a simple suggestion that you can implement immediately that will help you address the "environment and fueling matters" with your team (or yourself).

2. Choose one thing you hear that resonates with you... and tell your team or someone close to you. (Extra points if it is something you know you'd like to improve in yourself.)

Now, maybe you're thinking, "Wait, how does this grow my team if I'm listening to this myself?"

Very simply....IF... you do things like that consistently you will be setting an example that consistency matters (like watering a hibiscus all winter long) and is a necessary component of keeping things alive.

Leadership is very visual and people do what people see.

You'll also discover that consistency compounds.

"Real" people understand the wisdom in and importance of that statement and are willing to do what it takes to keep the buds blooming.

How real are you?

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