Success Rule #18 – Know Your Role

Are you a doer? Specialist? Coordinator? Resource provider? Worker? Diplomat? What role do you fill at home? Your role is how you fit in with the team, how do you contribute to the success of the mission. Not knowing your role will lead to conflict and failure. To use the stereotypical sport analogy, if you don’t fully understand your role, blocks will be missed, balls fumbled, errors made. If everyone doesn’t know their role the whole organization could fail.

For extraordinary success you must look for the role “sweet spot”. This occurs when three key elements fall into place with each other. To not have all of them will lead to failure, or at best mediocrity. Since they must all be in play, there is no hierarchy. ARE you ready? Element number one – COMPETENCY. Do you have the skills needed to fulfill this role? If not, can you learn them? Element number two – OPPORTUNITY. Is there a need or desire for this skill on your team? Is someone else already filling it? Is there room for one more? Element number three is PASSION. Do you have the desire and passion to fill this role?

In a previous job, I was what they would say in the south as, “cooking with grease”, I was in the zone. Knew my role inside and out, the leadership was a strong supporter and I had the ability to influence at all levels, and I loved what I did. I was at the top of my game. COMPETENT, OPPORTUNITY and PASSION. Subsequently I took an assignment in a different part of the country. I was still very good at what I did, still loved it and looking forward to the new opportunity, and in fact there was a need for the skills I could bring to the table. However, my new leadership had no desire for what I could do. As a result, I gained a valuable lesson that the sweet spot can change, with time, promotions, projects and more. Keep alert for the sweet spot throughout you life and career. Adjust as required. What led to your success today may not take you there tomorrow.

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