Earlier this year I went skydiving for the 3rd time. It got me thinking about what skydiving and leadership have in common.
1) Skydiving requires facing your fears. So does leadership. Being a leader takes courage…always has, always will.
2) Skydiving involves taking a leap of faith, which we are often required to do as leaders. Sometimes we leap willingly and with certainty, but other times the leap occurs only because we have someone willing to leap with us.
3) Sometimes leadership is a whirlwind that resembles the speed and intensity of the skydiving free fall. The pace makes us dizzy and perhaps a bit nauseous.
4) When leaders take time to slow down and enjoy the view, they often marvel at the beauty around them. That’s what happens when your parachute opens – the world is all around you; everything is quiet and peaceful; and you can take in the incredible beauty of the world below. When was the last time you slowed down for long enough to enjoy the view and reflect on what matters most?
5) Leadership resembles a tandem skydive because when you have good mentors and coaches surrounding you, you’re a lot more likely to be successful and have smooth landings. In my case, my tandem instructor had been skydiving for more than 20 years, and our landing was flawless. On my leadership journey, I am indebted to the mentors and coaches who guide me and offer their insights, support, and encouragement every step of the way, especially when I feel like I’m free-falling.
What do you say, leaders? Is it time for YOUR skydiving adventure?