The Rear View Mirror and the Windshield

Aug 22, 2018 | Kansas City, Personal

By Gita Smith, Senior Administration Officer, Core Bank
As I was driving into work this morning watching the cars in front me and checking my rear view mirror for cars behind me, I realized my first year anniversary with Core Bank is just around the corner. Where has the time gone? Rather than waiting until January to reflect on the past year, I find myself reflecting on the past 12 months in relation to my career, family, friendships and personal growth and development.
Each distinct area has had its challenges and rewards. In the career realm, I find myself looking in the rear view mirror asking:

  • What was the most important lesson I learned?
  • What was my biggest break-through moment?
  • What one thing would I do differently?
  • What new skills did I learn?

All of those questions are tied to the core of how I process information – I am (at work at least) a process and procedure driven person. I like to figure out a process (guideline), tweak the actual steps to make that process work and finally document the process in clear step-by-step instructions (procedure). The challenge lays in the “tweaking” of the process, because sometimes it’s a case of try it, find a hiccup, rework the process, find a different hiccup and rework it again. The reward comes when the process runs smoothly. And the next time someone asks “How do we do X”, we have a procedure that is streamlined, clear, concise and easy to follow.
Each member of my team is responsible for writing detailed procedures for every task they’re responsible for. The overarching mandate is that anyone, regardless of their experience level, should be able to pick up that procedure and complete the task. Due to technology changes or changes in regulations, procedures should always be living documents that require, at the very least, an annual review.
Now that I’ve glanced in my rear view mirror, it’s time to look forward through the windshield. The coming year will bring change. Change is, after all, inevitable.  I’m excited about my next year with Core Bank because I appreciate the variety in life, learning, growing, stretching, and reaching for higher goals.

The windshield makes me wonder

  • What mountains do I want to climb (aka what is my number one goal)?
  • What do I want to achieve career-wise?
  • What skills do I want to learn, improve, or master?
  • Which personal quality do I want to develop or strengthen?

What do you see in your rear view mirror and through your windshield?