This is the Leadership Journey series on the Choosing Leadership Podcast.

I believe we all have a lot to learn from each other’s stories – of where we started, where we are now, and our successes and struggles on the way. With this series of interviews, my attempt is to give leaders an opportunity to share their stories and for all of us to learn from their generous sharing. If you know a leader whom you would like to see celebrated on the show, please send me a message on LinkedIn with their name.

In the interview, we discuss how growth and growing hurts, and why is it important to be aware of that. He also shares the importance of staying balanced and having the support of a coach, and taking small breaks, and taking the right steps at the right moment when it comes to fast growth.

You can find Gernot at the below links

In the interview, Gernot shares

  • Growing hurts. So this is something I think it’s important to accept it and be aware of it. 
  • It is important to stay balanced.
  • We did one very useful exercise for ourself. We killed the company mentally, right? So we went through that process and said, What if, you know, like what would still be left? And we discovered a lot of network know how, personal assets, experience et, et cetera. So we could easily scale. Again, that set us mentally free and gave me a lot of freedom in saying like, Okay, now let’s buckle down all hands on deck.
  • Yoga and meditation help me in a way where I can recognize my own stress level. So I become aware of it and I can try to let it go, or sometimes I need to live through it. And sometimes I had meetings where I need to get up and say, Excuse me, I really have to take a break now. And then I take, uh, five minutes, walk around the block, do the breathing, and then I come back and I say what I did, and we laugh about it.
  • I can be like spiralling out of into the future and I’m, or around the other street corner and. I became aware in that moment of a pattern. So this is a strength but also a weakness. So what helps me is I need to have people around me who can help me keep the connection with the team and sometimes shake me and say like, Hey, Gernot um, the team needs that, has those issues, whereas I’m mentally maybe already a year or two years ahead.
  • Fear is natural reaction, right? There are also some good things in it, um, in a way. That might make you aware of risks that you were not aware, but fear is one of the worst, uh, counselors if you make decisions based out of fear. They will never, never never be good decisions. You run away from things or you avoid things or whatsoever. 
  • What helps me is, um, is a technique that I also learned in the last couple of years is it’s called shadow light on your fears or look at the monster under your bed, right when we were afraid, uh, maybe as kids that there was a monster, your bed, and then maybe our parents put the nightstand lamp and looked with you together.