At my best… which was not always the case in my 30s when I built The Learning Consultants… but has become more frequent as The Learning Consultants and its subsidiary Career Counseling Connecticut reaches year 20, I think “I will figure it out” when a problem arises.
“I don’t know how to do bookkeeping or build a website or ….” Judy said as she contemplated creating a very basic service business based in Southeastern, Connecticut. When I showed her how simple bookkeeping would be for her business and the relatively easy web building platforms that are available, she listened but still had too much fear to begin.
To almost every question she had about future tasks and projects, I told her “you will figure it out.” Judy was certainly bright enough and hard working enough to ensure that she would get what she needed done.
But Judy was thoroughly conditioned in the outdated K-12 process. She felt the need to be formally taught in a classroom setting before she could feel competent. “Where can I take classes in bookkeeping? In web design?…” was her typical solution to proposed challenges.
To be clear, taking such classes might be exactly how “you will figure it out” but usually such classes are not needed because in completing a task for the first time, such as setting up bookkeeping for a simple business, competency is created.
After our career counseling session, Judy met with a friend in East Lyme who had a small service business. Her friend showed her how simple it was to set up a system of bookkeeping. She also invested in Site-Build-It (not my current recommendation as this was 7 years ago) a simple web-building software that came with excellent guides. (Total cost $320 but well worth it for Judy).
As to other issues, Judy had been concerned about office space in New London, getting permits to work out of her home in East Lyme, transportation for her clients from Stonington who would need assistance (some of her clients were elderly) and a whole host of issues, Judy had a few increasingly brief virtual career coaching sessions and then, in our last session, said: “I know I’ll have more questions but I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to figure it out.” Success!