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Navigating A New Normal: My First Year of Hope, Humility, and Innovation

During a recent event, my oldest son looked around at a half-empty room and then looked at me and asked, "Dad, what does it feel like to see a half-empty room when you're used to being successful?" As I smiled half-heartedly and expressed gratitude for those present, he could sense my disappointment; he touched my shoulder and said, "Dad, I guess this is the life of an entrepreneur." He went on to say, "Dad, while it may not feel good, this is good for you because it is a lesson in every experience and humility is good." Reflecting on my first year since launching Jordan Sydnor, I have learned many lessons about humility, hope, and innovation. 

Since starting my coaching and consulting practice, every day presents a new challenge or a fresh opportunity. I'm embracing the virtues of hope and humility as constant companions as I travel this path as a business owner. I'm learning that the path is as significant as the desired destination, and humility helps pave the way for hope to flourish and drives me to remain committed to discovering innovative solutions for my business and clients.

From small beginnings to overcoming setbacks, each step has been instrumental in shaping Jordan Sydnor's foundation and future trajectory. Three important lessons on hope, humility, and innovation have emerged that have helped me navigate the intricacies of leadership and personal growth.

1. Embrace the Power of Small Steps & Humble Beginnings

Humble beginnings remind us of our roots and keep us grounded. They teach us that every significant achievement starts with a small step. Whether refining an innovative idea or crafting a unique solution for a client, the key lies in appreciating modest starts and incremental progress. In these moments, hope takes shape, fueling our journey forward.

  • Reflective Question:  How can you find strength and motivation in your small starts today?

  • Interactive Exercise:  Spend a few minutes each day journaling about your small achievements and progress. While they may seem small, they are a significant part of an entrepreneur's journey and process. This practice will keep you grounded and illuminate the path of continuous improvement and innovation. 

2. Learn from Setbacks with Humility

Setbacks are not failures but can be building blocks to future success. Approaching them with humility allows us to learn, adapt, and evolve. Through these challenges, innovation is born as we search for new directions and opportunities. Humility in setbacks cultivates hope by reinforcing the belief that every obstacle can be an opportunity in disguise.

  • A Question About Humility:  What recent setback can you reframe as an opportunity for growth?

  • An Exercise in Humility: Host a "Setback for Success forum" with your team or partners. This forum will allow you to share your experiences of setbacks and the lessons learned. It will foster a culture of openness, learning, and innovation.

3. Cultivate Hope through Innovation

Innovation thrives on the hope of creating something better, of making a difference. It's about looking forward with optimism and believing that every effort contributes to a larger purpose. As a coach, consultant, and facilitator, witnessing clients discover solutions and achieve leadership fitness is a profound source of hope. It reaffirms the impact of our work at Jordan Sydnor and the transformative power of innovative leadership.

  • An Innovative Question: How does your innovation contribute to a larger hope or vision?

  • An Innovative Exercise:  Organize an "innovation sprint" where you brainstorm and prototype solutions to a challenge within a short timeframe. This exercise emphasizes the hopeful pursuit of new ideas and the collective effort to bring them to life.

The lessons learned in hope and humility have been invaluable in this first year of journeying through entrepreneurship, consulting, writing, coaching, and innovation. These lessons remind me that, despite the difficult days and long hours, freedom and creative energy come from serving others and witnessing their growth. As we continue to help leaders find solutions and navigate the challenges and changes leaders face today, we'll let the lessons learned from these moments guide our path through innovation and humility toward a hopeful and impactful future.  


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