As One Door Closes……..

by | Jun 9, 2024

written by Nick Roud, Leadership | Career Coach | Founder of Nick Roud Coaching

What do you notice about the picture?

Don’t go through your career not opening doors. They are there to be open

Todays blog is for those who want to open doors!

To see what is behind the door you need to open it. 

In our professional careers it’s vitally important to appreciate that doors will open and close. Your role is not only to expect those times, but also to be as best prepared as you can both mentally and emotionally. 

When coaching CEOs we spend a great deal of time looking forwards and as Peter Drucker said  ‘what got you here won’t get you there’ one must acknowledge that when you reach the pinnacle of your game you are really only just beginning.  Now the hard work starts. Nearly all CEOs inform me that doors have been opened by others, that someone saw something special in that person and believed they had more to offer. and they will always be eternally grateful 

But what if the door is closed. What if you are not able to unlock the key that allows you to open that door. Do you simply turn your back on finding out or do you double down and work on unlocking it?  Most will not date to see what lies behind the door some with give up to soon and others will want to be curious enough to give it a dam good try.

Have you ever had a door slammed in your face. It happened to me recently as I walked from one meeting room to another my hands full of papers. I was so focused on the conversation I didn’t notice the large door swinging back only to take me out and let my reports fly. Whilst I was embarrassed on reflection it made me realise I wasn’t fully present. I was too in my head and not seeing what was going on around me. 

In our chosen careers the words I’m busy seem to be in vogue. When I ask what are you noticing about yourself?  I hear the usual oh I don’t have time for that I’ve got stuff to get off my desk. 

All to soon that I’ve got stuff to get off my desk dominates the individual. One day rolls into the next into the next week, month and years only for that person to not understand what is going on for them. What are they missing?

In a recent drive to a coffee spot with a client he was in a hurry and I’m glad my seat belt was fastened  as we approached the coffee spot I asked (Barry) not his real name what had he observed and or seen on our drive?  A long pause as we shared coffee. He could recal, His 360 feedback had shown clearly that he was ready to move into a bigger role but he was doing to much himself. He was owning everything and not letting go. 

He was getting frustrated with his current employer he had climbed the ranks and was earmarked for CEO but everyone he went for the role the board knocked him back. He was in the brink of resigning to him the door for CEO in his current firm was clearly locked. 

The board had decided along with him to work with a coach for a period of time. That coach was me and over a period of time I got to know Barry and his drive, his commitment and reasons why he wanted the job of CEO. It had nothing to do with title nor the lucrative salary which followed, it was more about fulfilment. He was at a stage in his career where he wasn’t fulfilled, he felt something wasn’t quite finished. He had more to give. 

In his mind and due to the fact that he had missed out 3 times in the CE role he was contemplating a move out of the organisation he loved and the people who he had spent a great deal of time working with. 

As we carried on our coffee I asked him to describe to me his mind. As he did his eyes where flicking all over the place. He was as I like to call it in a state of rush. He wasn’t taking breaths between just trying to get everything out. 

I asked him to think about a time where he could share with me everything that was going on around him. He struggled he couldn’t recall, he said maybe Xmas last year I had all the family over and well Nick that’s about it. 

He realised there and then that the one thing that was actually holding him back from the top job was himself, nothing else. 

I connected him with a dear friend, a fellow coach who works with athletes to ‘zone in’. He spent some time with him to work on slowing his mind down and together we put in some tools to enable him to be more aware, more in the present etc. Over a period of a few months and during our leadership coaching work I could tell he was a lot calmer, rather than doing a hand-brake turn in my driveway as he arrived he would slowly drive up the driveway, rather than jumping out the car and rushing at a 100miles an hour into my office he would stand, stretch and slowly walk to the office, great me with a hug and sit down. This was a massive transformation for him and when we conducted a follow up mini 360 the results where there to see. Improvement, bingo, he had unloved the code for that door to be open. He recently went for the role of CE and the board came back this time with a formal offer, they acknowledge the enormous effort and work he had put into himself and now was his time to lead the organisation. 

Now the hard work starts I said as we rolled our coaching engagement over for another 12 months. He is ready, the door is wide open and he has stepped through. 

Don’t be put off by doors that, at, first may not easily open, give it time and they will.

Perceived set backs should be seen as an opportunity!


For a confidential conversation about your leadership coaching needs, call Nick on +6421375630 or email him

Nick Roud

Nick Roud

Executive Leadership Coach

Nick is the Chairman of Nick Roud Coaching and a Global Award Winning Executive Coach. Nick holds the highest coaching qualification MCEC. His clients are typically Chief Executive Officers, Executives and Emerging Leaders. Nick’s office is based in Auckland, New Zealand and he travels extensively around the world to coach his clients. You can contact Nick directly on +6421375630