Is it time to call your own baby ugly?

Is your business struggling because of your leadership? Is your career search stalled because of your lack of effort?

Relax… it’s just an expression! I wouldn’t really do it to my baby!!

You got to admit that calling your baby ugly would be a pretty darn tough thing to do. After all this would be the epitome of personal slander, wouldn’t it? I say this because sometimes the best thing you can do is take a good long hard look at yourself and call your own bluff.

I do a ton of executive coaching (business and career) and my favourite question is.. now that you know what you know would you hire you? You may be surprised how many people say no. If you are one of them it’s time to call that baby ugly and rapidly change.

Many things inspired this blog (including my own self reflection) but today was the last straw. I met an executive who has struggled for over 10 years and they can’t understand why. To me, as an outsider, the answer was pretty obvious – they needed to step back, swallow their pride and re-launch. While I hate suggesting this to a once successful executive I have to ask which is worse.. calling the baby ugly or letting the person drown? I bet if you think about it you can come up with many examples where companies (or people) held onto a failing proposition for too long and the results were devastating. We all have personal attachment to what is ours but lets not let that blind our judgement.

So, is it time to call your baby ugly? Is your business struggling because of your leadership? Is your career search stalled because of your lack of effort? Are your skills/product obsolete for today’s active market? These are tough questions to swallow but they could be real life savers for you! A favourite book when I was growing up was “That was then.. this is now.” It was about the pain of admitting things had changed and making the tough decisions to right it all. Remember: what was king yesterday might not cut it tomorrow. Companies fail because they don’t get it, just make sure that you don’t too.

This month, have the guts to sit down and ask the question that none of us want to hear… Is my baby ugly? I guarantee whether you like the answer or not it will put you on the path to a brighter future. You can blame me if you wish but I bet some day you just might be writing to say a big thanks!

Curt Skene