Many people try to resolve challenges they might be facing on their own. But is that really the best way, especially if the challenges are significant?

For years I did the same. I would hunker down, dig deep within myself, and attempt to solve any challenge personally. Sometimes it worked, but at great cost or it took very long. At other times, my approach failed. But still, I would not ask for or accept help. It came from pride, stubbornness, stupidity or fear. I am not sure which!

All that came to a grinding halt when I developed excruciating back pain in 2002, after a 20 year history of increasing pain, and could not walk to the end of my driveway!

I had no choice: I sought out help anyplace and anywhere I could get it, and through the painful rehab and subsequent training to be able to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, I learned that the smartest thing I could do was seek help – from family, friends and experts. There is an African saying: “it takes a village to raise a child.” I believe it took a large chunk of Toronto to help me get to the top of this mountain!

[In the photo above, without the help and encouragement of our lead porter Paolo and his assistant, both in the background, my co-climber Hartwig  – on the left – and I would never have made it to the top – and back down].

I am now a firm believer in asking for help (and of course reciprocating and providing any help I can, wherever I can), and I am reaching out to you for your help – so that I can in turn, help others.

Recently, I was honoured to be selected as the Chair of a new 16 person CEO Advisory Group with TEC Canada, the leading leadership development organization in Canada. Less than 3% of people who apply to TEC or Vistage, their U.S. counterpart, get accepted.

My training, and that of other fellow Chairs, has been extensive and amazing, and I am very excited at the impact I can help make in the lives of CEOs and business owners by helping them get better results, make better decisions and become better leaders.

My challenge. My request for help.

I know very few Toronto CEOs who fit the description of smart, progressive, dynamic, growth oriented, and running companies with $5-100MM annual revenue. Maybe you do? If so…would you be willing to nominate them by sending me their name and company name?

This will allow me to start assessing their fit with the group, and then to contact them and explore their potential interest. And, if they are eventually invited to join the program after a rigorous selection process, they will thank you forever, as CEOs get tremendous business, professional and personal value from the program over many years.

Thank you in advance for your help. It’s not easy for me to ask. I hope that my leading by example might not only yield some good CEO nominations, but also inspire you to ask for help with something that you might be struggling with all alone.