Before you LEAP forward to face new challenges, make sure you are ready. Why are you not ready, you ask?
When a big opportunity presents itself and you say, "WOW!” when you should be saying, "HOW", remember that not all so-called “opportunities of a lifetime” end up to be GREAT opportunities to those who take the leap. It could end up being a disaster to some. Why?
Well! It's simple really. There is always that expectation for every result to be realized. When an opportunity presents itself, there is always a catch.
Thinking of the opportunities you don't want to miss out on tomorrow is great thinking because that means you're working on growth!! But people! That’s for tomorrow. Ever think of the opportunities you are possibly missing out on now? Those missed yesterday? The day before that? How about months or even years before? If you did think about these missed opportunities, what did you do after to rectify the situation? If you haven't done anything about it in the past, what are you doing about it at present?
If your answer to the question is, "Nothing" then that's a problem especially if you are living your every day not just to survive but to grow and succeed.
The bigger problem however is if you have not spared a moment in your life thinking about these missed opportunities at all because I have news for you! YOU SHOULD HAVE MADE TIME! The reality you are finding yourself in now, whether it's a reality you like or don’t like is a result of your performance in the past and how you are performing today.
What am I talking about here exactly? Definitely not the big ones. I am talking small, every single day opportunities that can be missed out easily. The missed opportunities to make a mark as a person, to gain trust and influence, to be your co-worker’s person, to make a difference, be the difference, stepping up and taking the lead when others won’t at any given time, and the missed opportunity to become more as an individual more for your sake than for others.
In short, the small opportunities your journey to growth and success so openly provided to help you ready yourself for bigger roles but were missed because you were too complacent to realize they were there.
As a Virtual Assistant, all small opportunities matter in order to succeed. You may be telling yourself as you read this, "But the opportunities were not there or I would've done something about it".
If you are a great Virtual Assistant, a Summit VA to be specific, the below examples should be familiar to you.
- The opportunity to double-check the tasks submitted so they are not just perfect in reference to expectations but to exceed these expectations.
- The opportunity to complete tasks before it was due instead of procrastinating.
- The opportunity to complete a task on time, no excuses and reasons.
- The opportunity to complete a project just to add one marked task on your checklist.
- The opportunity to brainstorm with others to solve an issue.
- The opportunity to go through everything that was done by all team members to find possible issues that could've grown to a much bigger problem later on.
- The opportunity to look at all of the team’s scheduled tasks to see if there is something you can do to ease up some of the
responsibilities of a teammate.
- The opportunity to complete something that was missed out by another because you took it upon yourself to review everything and know it needs to be done ASAP. -The opportunity to teach a team member if he/she is having a tough time doing the long road when there is a much simpler way to do it.
- The opportunity to create a Standard Operating Procedure even not required for each task or role that you play within the team so you won't miss out on any of the steps.
- The opportunity to create or improve SOPs for all tasks required for all the roles in the company.
- The opportunity to present yourself as a person who can do a task or tasks because one of your teammate was not able to come to work. -The opportunity to learn how a system work to find more features that the team isn't using at that time and be able to maximize the use of the said system.
- The opportunity to provide your company the help they needed, realized or yet to be realized by them.
- The opportunity to acquire new skills that may be helpful for the company when you were idle. -The opportunity to create a new filing system because you know there is a more effective way of doing it.
- The opportunity to suggest a new process to make working together more efficiently.
- The opportunity to go the extra mile for something that isn't yours to provide but you just want to be able to help.
- The opportunity to find loopholes from information already presented to create a better process or solve an already existing or yet to come up issue.
- The opportunity to find leverage from the mistakes made by all like working hard on improving to show you or all of you can do better.
- The opportunity to provide the best service instead of the mediocre service you have been providing just because you thought you were getting away with it.
- The opportunity to use the idle time you crave to have during shift to better use like learn more to be more useful.
- The opportunity to check everything out as you were in doubt about the outcome of what was just done.
- The opportunity to learn everything about the company's business, the different roles aside from your own, expectations on the roles, the how to pay each role, the systems and how they are being used, and how each and every person in the company is succeeding and what they do to succeed.
Achievers don't have to be presented with opportunities because they live to look and create opportunities for themselves every single day. These people? They pay attention.
Aside from the expectations for the position the company hired you for, what have you done today that really matters to you and the people around you? There are so many opportunities if you are really paying attention. Have you created some lately? If you haven’t, you should. If you have, look at all of them and my mentioned examples and then look at the bigger picture.
What am I telling you to slowly, surely, and without question, create for yourself?
The opportunity to LEARN!
The opportunity to TEACH! The opportunity to IMPROVE!
The opportunity to ADD VALUE!
The opportunity to GIVE and GROW!
THE opportunity to MATTER!
The opportunity to be the DIFFERENCE! The opportunity to be a NECESSITY first, ASSET next.
The opportunity to be EXCEPTIONAL! The opportunity to be INDISPENSABLE!
Yes! The right ingredients! And if you put in the time, the effort, the passion, the dedication, the HARD WORK and then some to take on these small opportunities you create for yourself every single day, you actually are creating the “YOU” who can easily say “WOW” when a big opportunity presents itself. The person who is most definitely ready to take that LEAP and yes, SUCCEED.
It can be the little things that can make a big difference! The little things today can provide the bigger things in life leading to the YOU that you imagined yourself being tomorrow. Or better yet, the successful "YOU" that you couldn’t even get yourself to imagine years ago.
Big opportunities to be an “opportunity of a lifetime” or a “disaster” depend on YOU.
Are you ready to say “WOW” and take the leap when presented a big opportunity or are you still on the “how” because you’re still working on being “the” real catch?
Remember! HOW to become a success always falls on “YOU” so the catch to these opportunities, people? It’s for you to work on being the real catch!
I leave you this: "The only constant as you live your life is CHANGE. Play it smart by using that to your advantage and you need to start today! Work to change the "JUST YOU" today to be the "BEST YOU" to wake up to tomorrow. You have the control because achieving what gives you the highest degree of fulfillment can only come from YOU!"
About the author: Bernadette Canero holds a Bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering. She is one of the founders and owners of Summit VA Solutions. Ms Canero is Summit VA Solutions' Vice President and Chief Operating Officer and Virtual Assistant Trainer.