Leading with the Mission (31 Days)

In many ways, this post has been a long time coming.

For those who have known me the longest, they will agree that I can be a little mission-focused… well, a lot mission-focused, really. If I’m honest, it’s probably some part of what drove me to become an entrepreneur and start SafeStack.

Finding my purpose

I have an unwavering belief and purpose in my career – to ensure that cyber security is available to everyone, individuals, companies and organizations, no matter where they are or how big their budgets.

A mangrove sapling emerging from a sheet of pumice stone

I was born too late to be a hippy, but I guess you could say this is the hill I choose to fight upon. This is the flag I raise and the course my energy seems to flow towards.

It could be worse.

Technology is incredibly exciting

I am constantly excited by the potential of technology to help solve world-sized problems. Not the typical Hollywood technologies like space travel and the Metaverse but the technologies that solve many important (and often unsexy) problems.

I meet entrepreneurs and am astounded by the good their work can do. People like:

I don’t see my role in the world as a creator of technology in this way but as a supporting cast member. My journey has always been about helping keep other people’s creations safe and secure.

I dream about a time when all software projects have cyber security woven into them so well that they stay safe but so subtly that you aren’t distracted by it. This is the introverted security specialists’ dream come true.

Choosing to lead with the mission

Despite this excitement and personal mission, however, I have always felt uncertain about leaning into this as a leader so I held back.

I worried about seeming egotistical, entitled or sometimes just deluded. I spent a lot of time asking myself:

  • Who am I to make my life work something that would or could impact so many people around the world?
  • What would possibly make me qualified to do this?
  • Am I indulging my ego, or is this drive linked to mission and purpose?

Many of us wonder about these sorts of things when we set out to do something bigger than we are comfortable with. As a first-time CEO and someone who manages anxiety, this tendency to overthink things can be a blessing or cause me to get in my own way.

It can be sobering to realise your fears and uncertainty are the only things holding you back.

Time to get out of my own way

I’ve decided the time has come to stop over-analysing and hiding the mission behind everything I do and lean into it. It’s time to really dive into the mission wholeheartedly.

In the coming days and months, I will be sharing very openly and honestly about some exciting things SafeStack and I will be doing to turn this mission into a change in the world.

Some of these things are local to New Zealand, some will be global in a way I have never attempted before, some will work, and some will be a chance to learn, but all of them will come from a place of purpose.

The first of these initiatives will launch in 31 days.

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