Choose people over process

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It had been several challenging years since an unexpected and necessary career transition.

Success in my new role required certification as a presentation coach.

The final step of that long and rigorous journey hinged upon a pass or fail grade from our master instructor.

Confronted with this do-or-die reality, I was unable to conquer my nerves. Anxiety was visible on my face and audible in my voice.

I was trying too hard and our master instructor sensed it.

He responded by sliding an index card under my binder.

I hesitated, shifted the binder, and read his handwritten note:

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My head dropped as tears filled my eyes. My shoulders relaxed and I breathed for, what felt like, the first time in years.

I was not supposed to have this information. Yet our instructor intuitively understood how this knowledge would ensure I gained the greatest value from our experience.

Our instructor chose me over the process. I’m grateful for his wisdom.

To this day, I keep his inspiring note close by.

Your commitment to the success of others may require you to wisely make them the priority.

The next time you’re stalled at the intersection of people or process… choose people.