I believe we should always be in a self-improvement mode, and not just at the beginning of a new year, as we utilize the gifts and opportunities we've been given. As a local travel and tourism industry, we can certainly be thankful for another strong year. Collectively, we have welcomed NFL fans for the big game, hosted the latest in a series of NCAA Division I championships, helped the American Legion celebrate its 100th anniversary and the Society of Women Engineers break attendance records with their annual conference. That is just a small cross section of the more than 600 events Meet Minneapolis helped to recruit and host in 2018! We're definitely on a roll.
We've had great success, but we know we must continue to improve – individually and collectively – to remain relevant and competitive.
So in the spirit of what we can do to “keep climbing” (to borrow a Delta Air Lines slogan), I would offer three things I plan to focus on:
Be a Better Mentor
I have been blessed to have had many individuals take an interest in helping me along my professional and personal journey. Some of the interactions have been episodic and short-lived. Others have been long-term in nature and are relevant to me even at this very moment. I will endeavor to discern opportunities to help those I encounter along their journeys. This could be anything from being a sounding board, serving as a reference, or just offering some constructive advice. This type of giving back helps to support our future leaders.
Work Harder to Synchronize All Aspects of My Life
Congruency in life is essential. Whether at home, work or play, we are the same person. Regardless of whether anyone else sees us or observes us, consistency in how we live our lives is a much more comfortable place for us to be. If we have to worry about curating a persona just for one aspect of our life, we're being inauthentic and setting ourselves up for forgetting who we are at any given time. Building trust and confidence will help me in all aspects of my life.
Intentionally Work to Build and Retain Relationships
Relationships should be more than transactions. Sadly, many of our interactions are of the quid pro quo variety. My goal is to ensure that I take the longer term view of both personal and business relationships and to focus more on the needs of those I encounter. There are many examples of relationships I have had with professional colleagues over the years that extend to new jobs and additional opportunities to work together. In short, I want to intentionally help those who can do nothing for me in return. I also want to work on any potentially strained relationships. It takes so much less energy to be cooperative than to maintain some sort of fissure. I can take that energy and focus on productive activities, like helping to book the next big convention or sporting event.
I would encourage you to consider areas in your professional life that are opportunities for improvement. Perhaps you will stumble upon something revolutionary to work on in your life, which will propel you to even greater heights and won't fade like a typical resolution. Happy New Year and thanks for a great 2018.