For this blog, I will begin by asking the reader a question that reflects your true Vision and Definition of Success. I will then give one little example from my journey that is a hint of Faith Based that is a great picture of this central truth. Many people in our society totally build their success on how many pats on the back and applause they can get. That is not what real leaders focus on.
So let me begin by asking the reader this:
When you look at your Vision or Definition of Success….
On what do you truly picture that real definition?
An Analogous Picture from my Journey
Let me offer a simple picture from my personal story that can be an analogous picture. 20 years ago, I was married to a lady I truly loved. One of her big challenges was that before me, she had 4 failed marriages, so she had some challenges in her vision and thought. Well, to make it quick, about 13 years or so ago, she had a Great Granddaughter who was still born. It was shocking for her and the day she was still born they could hear her heartbeat within her granddaughter/mother but unfortunately, when the newborn baby girl came out, she was still born and instead of celebrating her birth, they had to plan her funeral and it was painful.
Well, the pain of this rocked my ex-wife’s world and she really gave up on pretty much everything, including me, and she filed for divorce because she wanted to totally focus only on her blood line family. In the divorce, there was no negative financial thing on me but about 3 days before she moved out, I told her that “Even if it takes 10 years…if you ever feel the divorce was not good or right, all you have to do is call me”. The day she was moving out I was going to meet a coaching client in North Dallas, and I knew when I returned home, she would no longer be here. Before I left, I told the Lord that I serve that “If He led me in a totally different direction, I would follow Him but if He did not clearly lead me elsewhere, I would remain totally committed to her going forward”.
Many will misunderstand this because with many, their Vision is totally about what they can get out of it. That is not leadership. My Vision and Focus was that even if she never returned to me, my Clear Vision was:
“Even if she never returned, after her 4 failed marriages prior to us, I would at some point before she took her last breath help her realize that there was this 1 masculine man who TRULY LOVED HER and HE NEVER QUIT ON HER & HE
STAYED COMMITTED…and she would EXPERIENCE THAT REALITY!”
To make a long story short, I spent the next 9-10 years focused on her welfare and in fact, spent a few years voluntarily helping her dad financially paying back because he donated money to me to start my company. I also spent 3 years with her granddaughter (at the granddaughter’s request) and her family living with me in my house.
There came a time around 2018 that I had an insight that she was perhaps not doing as well financially and so I asked my pastor’s wife (who was a mutual friend) and she said that there were probably some financial struggles as she was on food stamps, and I started voluntarily donating money to my church and having them send her a check every month for a quite a while.
To make a long story short, around January 2019, my pastor’s wife related to me that she took her the check and my ex (having no understanding that I gave all of them) thought the church needed it and was going to have the church keep it. My pastor’s wife told her:
“The church was not out 1 penny because every check that we sent you was voluntarily donated to the church by 1 person and Earmarked for you!”
My ex was flabbergasted and after recovering from a stunned couple of moments, she asked “Who did that?” My pastor’s wife simply looked straight at her and said, “Randy did!” I was told that she was blown away and responded with positive shock saying “WOW…. OH WOW” and such. She then expressed very positive appreciation.
That was the last check that she received because 2 weeks later, she passed away and in tears, my pastor’s wife called me to tell me about it. I thanked her for connecting with what we had done for her.
I was truly honored only because my real Vision was Achieved. My Vision was not about me getting something for just me, it was much bigger and better than that and my Vision was achieved in the last 2 weeks of her life.
Let me leave you with a couple of questions:
1. What is your Real Vision and that of your Team and how do you truly define it and on what basis?
2. How must you enhance clarity on the real individual visions experienced by your team and see their alignment?
3. As a leader, how must you truly bring the Visions of your team into true synergy for true success?
Randy Swaim, Coaching for Relevance, LLC