The dirt road that I walked in Italy last week was recommended by someone in town.  Not heavily traveled, it would put me exactly where I wanted to be: immersed in the land.

Instead of people or cars, I saw olive, fig, and cypress trees.  Grape vines that lined the hills.  Wild finnochio and mint.

And gigantic rosemary bushes that threatened to spill out into the road if they weren’t trimmed back.

Ah, there it is, I thought.  Hot sun, arid soil, night temperatures that plummet.

Ideal conditions.

From my greenhouse days, I knew about the Mediterranean climate.  We’d tried to create it for the plants that would benefit, lightening the North Carolina soil, making every effort not to overwater, planting in full sun.

And many of those plants did just fine.

Or so I thought, until I saw, close up, what happens under ideal conditions.

Which got me thinking about a few things.

Are you creating the ideal conditions for your team members to grow and excel?  Or are you providing an approximation, hoping to produce extraordinary results?

Are you immersed in the places where you need to be, putting your boots on the ground at client sites and out in the field with your people, permitting you to see and understand, first hand, things that you might not if you weren’t close up?

And, for you, the leader:

What are your ideal growing conditions?  Those that free you and then connect you to the deepest part of yourself, the part with which you best lead, see, steer, and envision?


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My next openings are in late July.