Unfortunately this is going to be one of those blog posts where the title is confusing until the very end of the post. Like many of you are probably thinking, "I'll just skip the middle, and head straight for the end." While that is going to give you a very cleverly worked metaphor, you will be missing the heart and soul of this post. What is the best lesson you have ever learned?
One of those classic "interview questions" designed to have you share an experience that hopefully has shaped you in some way, shows some life experience or your character. However, many people panic at the question, trying to remember a past event that will portray them in an appropriate light to there perspective client, business partner or employer. The first time I heard this question, I was 17, going for a management possion at a retail store. I too, have asked the same question interview I have conducted. I've always seen it as a platform the applicant to tell me about them. I think we've all felt that pressure or need to tell a great tale, but, not many of us have stories or the gravitas of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates or Richard Branson, so we panic. Forgetting what the question is really asking, focusing on the solution and not problem. However, If we look at the likes of Richard Branson faced with the same situation, what would they do......answer it honestly from the heart...
If you don't have the right experience to reach your goal, go in another direction, look for a different way in. There's always a solution to the most complex problem. If you want to fly, get down to the airfield at the age of sixteen and make the tea. Keep your eyes open. Look and learn. You don't have to go to art school to be a fashion designer. Join a fashion company and push a broom. Work your way up.
- Richard Branson
Everyone wants to have things, now, but things take time, whether it be a new car, a house or a promotion. These things all take time, and none of them will define you, yet, the journey to get them just might. Goals or success are internal, what is important to you will be different from what is important to others, so be passionate about what you do and who you are. Put your heart and soul in to your goals and dreams and journey will be as rewarding as the destination!
For any of you wondering, what my answer to the question was, back when I was 17? My parents had taught me a lot of about hard work and never giving up particularly when it came to failing. So I said to the interview panel "learning to ride a bike." One of them laughed, the other two looked very unimpressed. She followed up "why?" To which I answered "when you learn to ride a bike, you learn the importance of getting up when you fall down and trying again. Also, that without balance you cannot move forward." This was not an amazing answer or even an entertain one. However, it was a honest one and a heartfelt one. No matter where life takes me I will always fall back on that lesson, and it also goes to show that even though the hardest questions are difficult, the answers can be quite simple.
By Adam Cooper, ABR
The Bagogloo Team, RE/MAX nova