May 19

One of the most valuable moments of growth in my professional life occurred in my early thirties when I was leading the restructuring of a creative team. I had the right idea, and the timing was perfect, but for a number of reasons, the initiative just wasn’t working. After a few months, my manager called me into his office to discuss what was going wrong. He agreed that it was the right idea at the right moment, but then he said something that I didn’t expect: “Just because it was your idea doesn’t mean that you’re the one who should execute it.” I’d never considered it. I assumed that because it was my idea, I would be the one leading the charge. It was an eye-opening moment.

Recognize that you will have many ideas in your life, and some of them will fall right into that sweet spot of personal passion and com- petence. However, you may also have some ideas that would have a much better chance of success if they were executed by someone else. It’s difficult to acknowledge this reality in the moment, but with a little distance and perspective, it’s often obvious to others.

Just because it’s a brilliant idea doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bril- liant idea for you. Maybe you need to find someone else to help you execute it.

Just because it’s your idea doesn’t mean you should execute it.


Are there any ideas in your life right now that you might need to find someone else to help you execute?

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