Guest Blog: ILP Day 2

17 April 2013 By Tony Sudenary, TAC

Last year I turned 40, which I suppose means I’m officially middle aged. And I suppose I tick most boxes for an Australian middle aged male from this generation – married, two kids, good job, comfortable life in the suburbs.

I cruise along in day to day life, focusing on what I need to do at work, home and at play. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a good life - I’ve achieved a lot and, more importantly, I have family and friends that I love.

Then I enrolled in Igniting Leadership and I’m happy to say that this course may have ‘ignited’ more than leadership, it may have sparked the beginning of a mid life crisis…...or perhaps a ‘Crucible experience’? Let me explain.

The course has challenged me to think about the essence of who I am. What am I passionate about? What are my strengths? How do I relate to other people? What do I value? Do the decisions I make at work reflect who I am and what I value?

You’d think at age forty you might have this stuff sorted by now and that you’d be able to answer the questions above faster than Usain Bolt takes to run 100 metres.

Yet I was left perplexed, dumfounded and stumped. I didn’t have all the answers. I still don’t. But I am thinking about it… quite a lot in fact. Why would I care about my next task or project when I can’t clearly articulate who I am?

Working on my workplace challenge with talented and caring people has been great, but privately I have set my own personal challenge – Tony, figure out who you are, what you value and how you can translate this into effective leadership.

When we’re food for worms, people won’t remember us for what we’ve done, they’ll remember us for who we were. And even if I learn nothing more from the Igniting Leadership course, the fact that I am thinking about this has made the whole experience so worthwhile.