The Everyday Opportunity
By Kipp Kaufmann (FCLP’17)
When was the last time you had a great opportunity just drop in your lap?
You may have been working towards a new challenge or opportunity that has come along or maybe you didn’t see it coming and suddenly there it was. Many of us are constantly focused on the ultimate goal and asking questions such as:
“When will my next leadership opportunity come up? What is the next ‘BIG’ thing I can do? What change can I lead? Why hasn’t it come yet?”
Instead, we rarely focus and enjoy the process we take to get to our goal.
Every day presents an opportunity to rise to the leadership challenge. Instead of being so focused on the next big thing, we can gain so much by focusing on the individual moments of the leadership journey that make a difference. This doesn’t need to be groundbreaking, it could be as simple as finding time for someone when you don’t have any, chatting with someone you don’t know or do something that makes you uncomfortable.
For me this can be well summed up by looking at the sporting world. It’s often assumed that a sports person only focuses on the major goal for the year – “we must win the Grand Final”, “I must get a gold at…” but every great team leader (coach, captain or athlete) is also focused on the moment and the current day practice. Reaching a goal and great performances are about delivering consistently. It’s this consistency which develops trust, interest and success. Great performances have been proven to be a summation of a series of moments that led to a great outcome.
It’s incredible to consider the ongoing moments we are offered and how they can develop our leadership capability. Some days you might have particularly intense leadership challenges while others come easy. Whatever the opportunity that presents itself, it’s a chance to learn and improve. Leadership shouldn’t be defined by one major opportunity or achievement, instead it is a series of moments over a lifetime where you choose to lean in and take the leadership challenge.
The next time you think that you are doing something mundane think of how a change in this moment can link to a series of moments to demonstrate exceptional leadership.
Kipp Kaufmann (FCLP’17)
Kipp is currently the General Manager – Sport at Cycling Australia where he is responsible for international and national events, coaching and officiating.
He has previously held roles as CEO of Cycling Victoria and the Alberta Bicycle Association.
His journey in sport management began at McMaster University in fundraising, alumni development and the 2010 Commonwealth Games Bid for Hamilton.
Moving to Australia to pursue his Masters degree he had roles at Yachting Victoria, 2006 Commonwealth Games and Blind Sports Australia.
Kipp also has a Masters of Business (Sport Management) from Deakin University and a Hons. Bachelor of Kinesiology from McMaster University.
Kipp is a graduate of the Leadership Victoria Folio Program.