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Let's Get Uncomfortable

August 09, 2022 BY The Siren Of Support Leave a comment

Those leggings you wear day after day - comfortable, even with the holes. That dysfunctional relationship that you keep going back to - comfortable, even with the underlying trust issues. Sitting in the same office everyday, doing the same thing, the same way - comfortable, even though you stopped learning new things and lost your umph. It’s time to get uncomfortable. Put the jeans on. Send the break up text. Get out of your slump and do something new. Something scary. Something you have never done before. 

Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Growth and change do not happen when you are satisfied with today. Spend everyday becoming a better version of you.

This week I am covering for one of our technicians. It has been years since I have had my days filled with customers on the phone looking for diagnostics. I will not even attempt to compare to their level of technical expertise, however I know enough to muddle through with a little help from the team. I know the right questions to ask, and how to ask them. I know when I am in over my head, and when to pass it off to someone with more knowledge. I spent the first half of my time at ETE Reman making and taking tech calls, but yesterday, I will reluctantly admit that I was slightly uncomfortable dialing the first phone number. 

I set my jitters aside, picked up the phone, and made the call. And many more after that. I resolved claim after claim. Even though I faltered on some words, and had to ask a question or two to the team, I never got cussed out, or told I was wrong. I didn't get belittled or hung up on. I made an impact, learned a few new things, walked a mile in the other tech’s shoes - all because I allowed myself to acknowledge that I was uncomfortable, and then defeat that feeling. 

What happens to your team when the comfort sets in? How do you, as a leader, make uncomfortableness less of an obstacle, and more of a challenge to be accepted? 

  • Growth Ends: When people become content with their current status or role, the drive to learn and develop stops. You are the best 4L60E builder? What’s stopping you from becoming a master at the 6L80E? Fastest runner? Get faster. Push your people to be multi-dimensional. You will have better coverage and provide better service.  
  • Bare Minimum is Considered Success: We stop asking what we could have done better when we get too comfortable with the status quo. Don’t allow your teams to be happy with just getting the job done. What can we do better? How can we improve the customer experience? Changing one process will make them squirm a little. While it may sting for a minute, the new bare minimum will end up a little less naked.  
  • Set the Bar Higher: Promote higher expectations. Always push your teams to be their best, and then push them another inch. Comfort is boring. Challenges are what keep people on their toes and invested in themselves and the company.
  • Provide the Tools and the Time: If you want your people to develop and become better you must provide the tools and the time to evolve. Dedicating the time for on-going training and skills assessment leaves no option for stagnancey. 

As a leader, you also must not relish in the comfort of your cozy office with the idea that, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. I challenge you to not only look at what your teams can do, but to also reflect internally and push yourself. A team is only as motivated as its leader. 

With that, I’m going to toss on some jeans, make a few calls, and take on some claims. Here’s to getting uncomfortable.

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