Photo by Mel Elías on Unsplash

Today’s post isn’t about galas. Or sports. (Or testicles.) It’s about making something in order to make progress.

My brilliant friend, Christa, and I have mini-mastermind sessions every other week and something we were talking about a while back has really stuck with me: sometimes, the most valuable thing you can do to “get the ball rolling” on a project or initiative, is to make the ball.

I’m finding this to be incredibly true in a lot of what I’ve been working on as a consultant. For the most part, my clients know what they want or need and what has to be done in order to get it, but they don’t have the time, resources, and/or know-how to make it happen.

So I build something.

Whether I build it from scratch or use recycled materials from a previous project, I create a metaphorical ball to be passed among the necessary stakeholders to review and react to it, edit and refine it, douse it with criticism and praise, shrink it, grow it, and give it a new shape. (Related reading: Know Your Boss: Does She Love a First Draft?)

Christa is in a new role that was established to create some order within a growing unit that manages a lot of projects. She is tasked with identifying places that are craving systems, creating the systems, overseeing the testing of those systems, and putting the systems in place. On top of doing her job, she is also building the ball of what her role looks like, since she’s the first one to be in it.

In order to get the ball rolling, or to have a ball in one’s court, or to have a ball in the air, or to have a ball to drop (but hopefully not), there needs to be a ball!

Even if I don’t have the final say in something being invested in and implemented, creating the ball in the first place is incredibly valuable for making any kind of progress on the task/project/initiative/strategy.

There’s no ball too big or small to get rolling in the right direction and at the right speed.

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