leadership, personal

Buying a Used Home

We just bought a used home, and will move in next week. We are taking advantage of the fact that our rental hadn’t ended yet to get a couple of things done to the house. Really nothing big, house was in great shape. But here’s the deal…it isn’t as “perfect” as we thought. Looked great on paper, loved it the first time we saw it. Now we are getting to the reality.

You know, walk around and find things you hadn’t noticed when you were in the sales process. See things once the old furniture is gone and nothing has replaced it. Start flipping switches that you assumed turned on lights that aren’t actually working.

So we are still excited and these things are all super small. But it sort of reminded me of work, probably even life.

Almost a year ago I started a new role in my company:

  •  Looked great on paper – new arena, will be the best new building in the country, great partnership of two powerhouse companies;
  • First time kicking the tires everything seemed on track – clean construction site, leaders on both owners’ teams have great relationships, top leadership of the arena in place;
  • As we got deeper, realized we had to work on some things – hiring the next level of management was taking longer than we hoped, some key areas of the building hadn’t really been designed, we didn’t have regular methods to ensure good communication between those folks that had great relationships.

I just assembled a new team at work:

  •  Looked great on paper – amazing set of experienced leaders, long-standing relationships in the business, key team members in place;
  • First time kicking the tires everything seemed on track – bringing discipline to newer development areas, getting support for critical areas, engaged leadership team with passion and energy;
  • As we got deeper, realized we had to work on some things – some positions had been neglected and weren’t filled or not fully functioning, lack of communication for key processes, reliance on long-standing methods when we need fresh ideas.

Here’s the thing about all these situations – the fun is in the mess. The accomplishment comes when you work through the problems, work through them together, and celebrate your victory together.

We got all the light bulbs replaced through the entire house, we got the window coverings fixed that we thought were great but were actually falling down, and we fixed all the leaky faucets.

We got HR involved to help us get through the hiring process faster, we rolled up our sleeves and starting designing spaces, we put in more organized oversight for the owners.

We got consultants engaged to help us identify resource needs, we started putting in key communication methods like daily checkpoints in key areas, we started re-working processes and looking for more efficient ways of doing key processes.

Like anything in life, these things are still a work in progress – always will be. By the way, just because I wouldn’t have put that tile in the master bathroom doesn’t mean it isn’t good tile. None of us are perfect, we all have our own style. This goes for houses, work, friends, family, loved ones, etc.

I wouldn’t’ trade this house for anything. I wouldn’t trade my role at work for anything. I wouldn’t trade my team for anything. I have the best house, best role, best team. I am still a work in progress, and so are they – that’s how it should be. The most important reason this house will always be my favorite is that I am in it with the one I love. At the end, as long as you love the people involved, the “stuff” will get worked out.

Oh, I forgot the most important reason you buy a used house – buying a new home sounds nice, but is actually the hardest thing you can do and is never satisfying like you think it will be.



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