Let’s be honest, I’m sure the general consensus is that REALTORS® and astronauts have very little in common. However, during this year’s Leadership Summit keynote, I discovered that once you get beyond the obvious (none of us have been to space, right?), there are more parallels than you’d think!
Each year, CREA’s Leadership Summit aims to provide inspiration and guidance to our Canadian members as they prepare to face the year ahead. And, who better to talk about overcoming challenges than Col Chris Hadfield, the 35th – and sole Canadian – commander of the International Space Station?
So, how do we, as REALTORS®, relate to the scientific elite who have earned the right and privilege to circle the earth?
Prep work: Col Hadfield talked about recognizing that great accomplishments are determined by detailed and well thought-out preparation. Our judgments must be based on fact, not hearsay; research, not consensus; deliberation not emotion.
And then, more prep work: Success in life can hinge on getting ready for things that can and do go wrong, so that instinct and preparation can take over when crisis occurs. As Col Hadfield advised: ‘Expect failure and practice how to deal with it’. Living that mantra kept him safe in a hostile environment where the slightest error could mean death.
Thirst for knowledge: ‘Imagine what the world will look like and plan for it.’ Col Hadfield trained all his life for an opportunity that was not possible for a Canadian (we had no space program), but when the future he envisioned became possible, he had already laid the foundation necessary to meet the challenge. Competence means always learning and being open to learning. It means having a vision and a plan. It is the constant search for knowledge that allows us to expand and improve our approach and map a path to the future we want.
Reaching further: Col Hadfield pointed out that ‘It is easier to believe something than understand it’. Building knowledge and understanding of the complexities we face so that we take the right path, as opposed to the easy one – is what will differentiate us, and allow us to achieve our goals. How you apply this to the year ahead is an opportunity waiting to be discovered.
To paraphrase Col Chris Hadfield: there are no limits when focus, ingenuity and teamwork combine with clear vision.
To paraphrase me: Good luck doesn’t hurt either.
Long may your big jib draw!