To go for it, or not to go for it? I am standing in the middle of the fairway with 230 yards left on a par 5, it is the middle of a tournament and I am 1 shot back with 3 to play. The stress is high. Will all the practice pay off? Can I summon the perfect shot?
My focus on performance under pressure has always been a key part of what makes me tick – a common thread in my background in athletics, academics, coaching, and consulting. The challenge of getting the most out of yourself and your team, when the stakes are highest, is what drives me forward.
During my first working experiences with the Federal Bureau of Investigations, through my over 20 year career in Management Consulting, I have been fascinated by the impact that pressure and stress have on decision making. The struggle of overcoming our fears and doubts, to rise to the occasion, to make the decision to act when it matters most.
The reason I love consulting, is it combines the search for performance and the challenge of overcoming the fear of failure. From Seoul, to Seattle; and from Vevey to Los Angeles; from high tech and financial services to CPG and hospitality – all efforts were centered in how to help clients chart a new path forward in high pressure situations and overcome the inherent risk and fear of moving ahead. You know you have made a difference when a former client and Fortune 500 CEO, thanks you for helping his organization overcome the tyranny of past missteps to chart a new, focused path forward.
Throughout the last ten years I have had many opportunities to test my own ability to rise to professional challenges. As FutureBrand’s Chief Strategy Officer I rose to the challenge of building a global consulting offering, but, as the President of FutureBrand’s North American operations I struggled with uniting a fractured culture in the face of mounting economic pressures. As Chief Strategy Officer at Organic, I both rose to the challenge of helping the agency become more strategic, yet struggled with narrowing my focus to one component of a broader solution to addressing my clients‘ business challenges. Each of these successes and failures gave me insight into the real and personal challenges that my clients’ face everyday.
In 2010, I decided it was time to bring a “little pressure” into my own professional life, becoming an entrepreneur, opening a new consultancy in the midst of a recession. cg42 was founded on the idea of helping businesses in high pressure situations rise to the challenge – to find growth when their current prospects are at the most difficult.
So, I am standing in the fairway…can you guess which club I pulled?