If we could watch Ambition and Drive in the womb, we’d no doubt witness it thrashing, kicking and wriggling endlessly trying to escape.
Free from the confines of its birthplace and now breathing on its own, Ambition and Drive has never looked back, its sights now firmly set on conquering the part of the world its chosen to make a difference in!
Watching Ambition and Drive at work in many companies and organisations over more than twenty years, I have come to possess a great deal of empathy for those with these incredible qualities.
Because for those who don’t have Ambition and Drive, it can be very difficult to understand and so they are often much maligned.
These qualities are, though, paramount for any business; they are exactly what’s needed to begin a business, to sell a vision for that business to others and to inspire others to come on board to support it.
They’re also a must for when an enterprise is facing obstacles. Without Ambition and Drive, overcoming organisational challenges is very difficult.
Ambition and Drive have an enviable ability to keep going, push forward, apply themselves in tough times and focus on making improvements. Occasionally, they may cop a knock and seem to subside but they rarely disappear for good.
One thing I’ve noticed is that, when you see Ambition and Drive in action, there is no mistaking them! They are indeed powerful.
And yet so are other qualities that others in the workplace (who may not display Ambition and Drive) exhibit.
In any organisation, Ambition and Drive won’t be enough to ensure success.
Other qualities and ‘types’ are also required – but often don’t feel as well recognised or valued.
- ‘Competents’ – the best friends of those with ambition and drive; they get things done to the standard needed
- ‘Harmonisers’ – carefully manage people and relationships and help create harmony in the workplace
- ‘Socialites’ – outward looking ‘people people’ who connect with others easily
People who don’t have Ambition and Drive but do have these other essential qualities can feel intimidated by the force that sits behind Ambition and Drive, and it can make them feel awkward.
Ambition and Drive are often worshipped and placed on a pedestal too. This can mean that if a team member doesn’t have the qualities, they may feel they’re lacking.
If this is happening (and it does all the time), it can create some significant tensions and the key to tacking this tension is to help the different types of team members understand and navigate each other, to develop a healthy, flourishing environment where these colleagues don’t just co-exist but truly value how they complement each other.
Doing this creates a culture where each person can thrive and paves the way for the business to be able to succeed.
In SMEs, Ambition and Drive usually abound, so managing it – and the other qualities required for growth (more on these in future blogs!) – well is particularly crucial, and ignoring it is not an option for those businesses with success in their sights.