I was brought on as an indie consultant to lead a software implementation for a major branch of the military.
This project, without a doubt, not one of, but “THE” toughest job/projects of my entire life. There were at least 6 people who had been in the position before me that had quit.
The client also hired another group of consultants whose job was to specifically fact check and challenge every solution I proposed in our information gathering sessions. Additionally, the client also had their team present with people from the highest ranks in military and the highest ranks of US government to drop in, listen to my recommendations and fact check as well.
I had NEVER seen anything like it, on any project, EVER! sessions were intense with everyone juxtapositioning ideas, agreeing disagreeing, on what the best course of action was.
Each night, I would go back to my hotel room mentally and emotionally exhausted, and some days I just prayed and cried. I couldn’t see the finish line and there were many times that I just wanted to leave like every one else before me. But I didn’t, I stayed, I pushed through. I had to rely on friends and family for encouragement and emotional support.
I successfully completed the project. I can tell you this I was definitely not the same Consultant when I left. I was a better consultant. My skills, my knowledge, my ability to execute in tough situations, everything, had been put to the ultimate test.
This was the lesson for me... Your biggest challenges are often purposed to grow you, strengthen you, not destroy you.