When your radio jumps from incessant Christmas songs to "the top 100 songs of [year]" you know it's ok to step back and reflect.
This past July, facing the decision to leave an established company, a role I was killing, and some serious money, I sat down with a mentor of mine.
We talked about the opportunity ahead of me - to grow into an executive sales leadership role at a rocket ship of a startup that could truly redefine an industry.
Something that scared me, I said, was that when I looked at executive sales leaders I admired ... I didn't see myself. These guys are so... GOOD. They're experienced, both as sellers and executives. They're poised and polished. They're RESPECTED.
The wise man looked at me and said "I'd be scared if you tried to be THEM, instead of being YOURSELF."
Fast forward. Having recently moved into that executive sales leader role - and naturally feeling a bit anxious about living up to the massive opportunity - I happened to flip on the documentary Kobe's Muse and had a bit of an epiphany.
Heading into a playoff series against Utah - which featured veteran stars Bryant admired in Stockton and Malone, as well as his own wise man in teammate Shaquille O'Neal - Kobe was so nervous that he sat in his hotel room memorizing the playbook.
Then, in the elimination game, he did this:
Over the next 18 years after that 18 year old rookie shot 4 airballs, he amassed 36 game winners. Bryant stopped trying to be the veterans he idolized, and settled into being himself.
For anyone facing a new challenge in 2016 ... concerned if you're up for it ... do what I did ... make a list. Instead of wasting another minute focusing on what makes them THEM, figure out what makes you YOU.
Those who have read my work know that ending on some esoteric fluff is not my style... so instead, here's my list of what makes me, me, and why I'll succeed as a rookie executive in 2016:
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