Over my many years in various leadership roles, I have made some mistakes aligning many priorities…
I remember my first company command when I assumed command of a basic training company at Fort McClellan Alabama. We had the privilege of turning civilians into soldiers.
As the first female commander, I was both excited and nervous. While I was preparing to assume command, I recall having a conversation with a senior female officer. She shared her struggles to balance work and family in a male dominated career. I remember thinking, no problem, I’ve got this!
Once I assumed command, my world changed. I went from working a five-day week to working seven days of the week. Our training cycle was eight weeks of training, graduation and two weeks prep time for the next cycle.
My day started at 4 AM with physical training, then home for a shower, returning to eat breakfast with my soldiers and then on to a training site for eight hours of training. Once our training ended, we would march back to the company area for dinner and more training. The day would end with lights out at 9 pm. After a few hours of sleep the day would begin again.
Needless to say, I wasn’t spending much time at home and my family life was suffering. My daughter was four years old when I assumed command. While my husband was very supportive, he was now doing everything.
After my first two training cycles, I realized I couldn’t keep this pace for two years. Something had to give. Would it be work or family?
Reflecting on my earlier conversation with the senior female officer, she chose her career. I remember thinking “why can’t I have both?”
So how do we align our priorities once we are in the chair? Listed below are seven questions to guide you as you navigate this season in your life.
- Who and what are important in my life?
- How does faith, family, and health fit with my new responsibilities?
- What are the requirements of my position?
- How do I spend my time?
- What do I need to trade-off to achieve the greatest return?
- What resources can I use to maximize my efforts?
- Who can I partner with to achieve success?
When you have answered these question, you will have a foundation to build success. We all go through different seasons in life but we don’t have to sacrifice ourselves to be successful.
Now that you are in the chair, what choices will you make to align your priorities?
Kim D. Moore
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