It is fall on our farm in Clear Lake, Wisconsin. In another week or two, the leaves will peak in color and will all too quickly fall, leaving the barren branches of winter. It is such a dichotomy to me. I lament the end of summer, and yet, I am filled with regret that I didn’t play enough in the sun nor spent enough hours being lazy in a hammock. At the same time, I revel in the blaze of orange and yellows against the crystal blue of the autumn sky. Without the end of summer, there is no beauty of the fall.
Recently, my husband and I were coming back from a walk through our woods to the point on the lake where we canoe and watch the eagles. In that moment, I began to reminisce and play back the snapshots in my head of my childhood: running through the fields, exploring the forest. I told my husband of my first spiritual experience laying on my back in the snow in the bitter cold, examining the snow flakes and realizing for the first time, they truly are all unique—that no two are the same and being overwhelmed by their extraordinary beauty. Without the bitter cold, there would be no snowflakes, nor promise of spring. The cycle of life springs from, and is dependent upon, change.
I recounted to him how my great Aunt Ida would come to visit her sister’s homestead farm once a year from Idaho. My grandma would walk her around the farm and Ida would, invariably, reach down and pluck a four-leaf clover from the sea of three-leaf variety stretched out endlessly before them. I was amazed at this talent and spent untold hours trying to recreate her effortless ability.
As I spoke these words, I instinctively bent over a patch of clover and picked one myself! Neither one of us could comprehend this immediately at that moment, as I had just found my first ever four leaf clover! Without the weeds, there is no promise of opportunity and sometimes, it can take a very long time to realize your dreams (no matter how small).
Inspired by the change of season taking place around us, this brings me to one of the most important characteristics of a consultant (or a recruiter): adaptability. The ability to adjust to a changing environment, new tools, processes, technology, industry, company culture and moirés sets an extraordinary consultant apart from the average. The ability to see through the clouds of change that make employees feel uncomfortable and help them not only manage it but embrace it for what it can become, the beauty of a new season and the promise of a four leaf clover.
Change is not only inevitable; it is part and parcel of the recipe for life’s next adventure. Don’t merely accept it, revel in it—and those around you. They will mirror that energy back; from one, many.
That day, to celebrate our good fortune and embrace the transition to autumn, my husband and I picked apples at the height of perfection from the heavily laden tree at the homestead and baked two apple pies. Change is good—and sometimes tasty!