Throughout my professional life slow wins and uphill fights have been the norm. It’s difficult in the moment, but I wouldn’t want it any other way. Fun, fast, and easy may be tempting, but becoming successful too quickly is usually detrimental. A slow start offers the time and testing it takes to build the right infrastructure for success in the note business. Without it our skills, resources, and character will all come up short eventually—usually sooner than expected and sometimes to disastrous results.
If you find yourself coming out the gates more sluggishly than you want, consider these blessings of a slow start:
It forces us to rise to the occasion. Obstacles force decisions. Do we go on or not? Do we play full out or quit the field? If we answer the right way, a challenging start makes for a better win because it forces us to give our best.
We find weaknesses we otherwise wouldn’t notice. Testing exposes fault lines. Whether it’s our systems, our offering, our team, or our own character, the challenge of a slow start can help us locate areas in need of improvement. We all have them, but we rarely go looking for them on our own.
We discover resources we didn’t know we had. Tough times put our creativity, endurance, and courage to work in ways easy times don’t. When Heather Kampf fell down in the 600 meter dash and still caught up to win the race, she said, “I hit a gear I never knew I had.” We only become aware of what’s possible when we try to do what seems impossible.
We come up with unique solutions we wouldn’t otherwise have. Julian Simon called human creativity the ultimate resource, but sometimes—oftentimes—it takes outside circumstances to maximize that resource. When Armstrong Capital moved slower than I wanted, I had to come up with several strategies that drove better results, but the circumstances inspired the extra creativity.
It’s good for us.
We forge new relationships. That extra reliance inside a team can fortify those relationships, but the same goes for external partnerships. As we seek to push through the slog, we often rely on outside help. But it’s get and give. And the more you give to help others in the same situation, the stronger those bonds become.
It’s an opportunity to grow our leadership. Everything I’ve listed so far speaks to leadership. As we push past a slow start, we develop our leadership intuitions and skills—and not just leadership of our teams, partners, and affiliates, but our self-leadership as well.
We develop resilience. The more times we overcome difficulties in business and life the more capable we are at overcoming whatever comes next. Long-term success requires resilience, self-confidence, and personal fortitude. Every slow start is a chance to develop the traits that will root us down deep and help us stand through life’s storms.
Whenever we’re tempted to fume or badmouth a slow start, it’s important to remember that the very challenges we face help us build the personal and organizational foundation we need for long term success in the note business. Without it, we’re all tree and no roots. When a straight-line wind hits us, we’ll eventually topple. Remember, success demands action! Keep on marketing, it’s going to work! TWITA! (That’s What I’m Talking About!) ☺
Jeff Armstrong of Armstrong Capital has been a note broker and investor specializing in the seller financed note industry since 1991. He can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more updated and current information on how he can help you with your note business, your note investments or to request a quote on a note you currently have visit www.armstrongcapital.com.