I recently attended a leadership training course through my employer. I didn’t really have any preconceived ideas about what to expect or if I would get anything out of it, so I was happy when I finished the 2 day course and really felt invigorated about the future of not just my team, but me as an individual.
I do have 1 regret though… You see on day one we had a presenter who was, in my opinion, quite pompous. This was particularly apparent when he spoke about regarding his status as a professor and obvious career as an academic. I am someone who is quite easily put offside when someone rubs me up the wrong way, and while this person didn’t do anything specifically to me, I found myself far less interested in what he had to say, because I perceived him to be a “bit of a dick”.
Day 2 of the course had a different presenter and I immediately took a liking to him. He was charismatic, intelligent, well spoken and obviously knew his material. I instantly was interested in what he had to say and to learn as much as I could from him. By the end of the day I was in a much better mood and when the original day 1 presenter returned, I knew that I had only really gained 50% of the benefit of the course.
I had closed myself off to this particular person because of just a couple of things that didn’t really matter. This person, despite being pompous, was also someone who had a lot of valuable information to share and I really should have recognized this earlier. Just because I don’t really connect with or like someone, doesn’t mean I can’t find value in them. So my lesson in all of this is that in the future I need to take a better control of my emotions and decide on what’s important and what I can gain from particular situations.
I guess that even though I missed a lot of great content in day 1, at least I learned this pretty powerful lesson.