Finishing what you start

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Are you more of a “starter” or a “finisher”? If you’re a starter you’ll be really good at the initial burst of activity, then struggle to get to the end if it’s not urgent, or if it’s not clear what it takes to get there. If you’re a finisher, you’ll be really good at making sure all the details are correct and things are completed.

I am more of a starter, except when I promise something to someone, then I am a finisher. That’s my sense of responsibility kicking in.

These tendencies affect how I organise my working life as a solo entrepreneur. For a big open-ended objective, like making my course “Data science for CEOs”, I break it down into specific tasks, but since no one is waiting for it to be done the timeline is open-ended. It keeps getting postponed by smaller tasks that are more urgent.

What pushes things forward is making an appointment with other people, like the beta test webinar I ran in spring, or giving a data strategy seminar for a client. Then the content will be complete, polished and well-presented to fit the needs of my audience.

That’s why you’ll see me writing about making actionable growth plans that are clear and specific. The more specific you can be, the better your team can execute and get to the desired result. Adding moments of accountability and people to whom to be accountable can help to keep the momentum going for both starters and finishers.

How do you see this playing out in your work? Are you a starter or a finisher? Does it affect how you allocate work, follow it up, and support your team in getting things done? What does your team need from you as a leader?

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