[036] What drives and motivates you as an entrepreneurial leader?

Why it’s important to love your business

As you can see from the vlog below, a couple of weeks ago I went back to my home town of Skegness, by the sea in Lincolnshire, UK. It got me thinking about big, hairy, audacious business goals, journeys, stories, what makes us ‘us’, and what motivates us.

Our past can inspire our future – but we are not bound by it

When I was about eight, my Mum and I moved from Castle Donington, near Derby and East Midlands Airport, to Skegness. We moved there because my Mum (it was just the two of us back then) thought I would have a better education and also wanted me to grow up by the sea. Because we were saving up for a house we lived in a caravan for a while – as you can see from the video, that same caravan site is still there at least 40 years later!

Photo: back at Walsh’s Caravan Park, Skegness – about 40 years later!

Mum started teaching there at Seathorne County Primary School, and I went to that same school between the ages of eight and eleven.

Because Mum was a teacher and had all her lesson prep and everything to do, I used to go in early with her, and stay after school with her. I would occupy myself by reading text books, pretending to create lessons, and also by helping her set up lessons and creative activities. I think actually being there set some of the scene in terms of what I am doing today as a consultant, coach and workshop designer and facilitator.

Sometimes to look forwards, it can help us to look back

If you’re thinking about a change in direction, or if you are wondering if what you are doing now is the right thing for you, go back and think about what you loved doing when you were really small and could choose how you spent your time.

Are you still creating time to build these activities into your everyday life and your work?  I now spend every working day designing resources, coaching people, creating training sessions and facilitating events. I’m literally in my element doing those things, and I know that all of that came from my time with my Mum, preparing lessons for the day all those years ago at that primary school in Skegness. I’m sure that the joy of doing this work will never leave me.

That’s one of the reasons I am excited about my Idea Time Membership, for people who want to think differently and take their business to the next level. I am absolutely loving creating all the content for it. What plans do you have to create something in your business that is based on what you love doing and feel passionately about, and that also serves your customers?

It reminds me of the powerful quote from Frederick Buechner. Our calling is the place where our “deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.”

Photo: I love putting resources together to help you.

Above is one of my free downloadable toolkits to help you design and run your own team meetings and awaydays. You can get it for free here.

Rise above the critics and forge your own path

Mum saved hard and we did move to a small house in Skegness after a while. I watched my Mum work hard and do everything with full commitment, and to the best of her ability. I learned my work ethic from her. I did really well at school and was always quite a way ahead of everybody in my peer group because I worked hard and really enjoyed learning. That didn’t always make me the most popular person, and I became very resilient as a result.

Later, I actually ended up getting an offer to study Modern Languages at the University of Oxford. The University gave me an unconditional offer of two grade Es at A-level, the minimum entry requirement they were allowed to offer anyone. Of course, I did much better than the minimum, and went to study French and Spanish at Trinity College, University of Oxford, which was awesome.

Having a clear vision of what you want to achieve is extraordinarily powerful

When I was in secondary school, I set myself that goal of getting into the University of Oxford. I had a picture of the University on my bedroom wall and told myself that one day I would go there. I loved studying and learning so much, it that was what I really, really, wanted to do – to be in such a revered and wonderful place of learning was magical for me. Having that vision, that picture in front of me, was a constant reminder of what I was aiming for and why. I had no concept of vision of goal setting back then, it was all intuitive. I probably would have been about 14 or 15 years old at that time. I just really worked for it. I could see myself there, even though it always felt like a bit of a distant dream. To be honest, for someone from Skegness with my background, in those days, to earn a place at the University of Oxford, seemed like a distant possibility. But I really worked for it, and was absolutely over the moon to succeed.

When we set ourselves big, hairy audacious goals AND do the work, we can achieve more than we ever thought was possible!

My work ethic has always been to set a vision, strive to achieve it, really go for it, and see how I might surprise myself!

 You are very likely to surprise yourself in terms of all of those things you can accomplish. It really doesn’t matter where your starting point is. It’s about starting from where you are at, seeing where you want to be, and moving forward from there.

I know that this is what started my passion, and almost obsession, with helping people to achieve their own big, hairy, audacious business goals. These are the chunky, meaningful and challenging things that you want to do. You know that they will make a substantial difference to your life, your happiness, your financial wellbeing, and more. You can see that you have huge potential and lots of opportunity, but maybe you are not that sure how to go after them, or how to accelerate your progress towards them.

If you have worked with me as a client on my Idea Time coaching programme, you know that that is where we start. We explore your big hairy audacious business goals in depth and create a clear vision.  

Photo: Still and always will be passionate about helping people achieve their big, hairy audacious goals (BHAGs)!

If you haven’t already, I strongly encourage you to think about your journey, and what inspires and motivates you to do what you do, because that is actually the drive, the motivation that keeps every one of us going and living the best life we can.

I’d also love to help you to achieve your big, hairy, audacious business goals too. Why wait? If you start now, imagine where you could be in 3, 6 and 12 months from now. My Idea Time Membership is super affordable at just £378 plus VAT for an annual membership, or £42 plus VAT monthly.  A daily flat white from your favourite coffee shop will cost more than that over a year! Get in touch with me in person at jo@ideatime.co.uk, or find out more and sign up, obligation-free, on my Membership wait list here so that you can be the first to hear about the launch, contents and what’s new.

I’m looking forward to working with you inside my Idea Time Membership!

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