Excelling at something is going to cost you; the higher the goal, the greater the cost. Whether you want to excel at a sport, in business, or in relationships…there is a price to be paid for excellence.
I have been fortunate in my career to have excelled in business and been awarded top salesman / manager on more than one occasion with several companies. Looking back, I did not have that goal in mind when I was working. I just wanted to do well, make a lot of money, and enjoy my work. Being the top dog was not my goal…it was a by-product of pursuing the desire to excel.
I can recall working alone in cath labs all night long so that the client would have great images when they took pictures the next day. There were many times I had that self-talk and asked, “What am I doing here???” The rewards were not instantaneous. Many times I wondered if what I was doing really mattered.
Here is what I learned about excellence:
- It requires that you do more than others are typically willing to do. That is what sets you apart when you do more than what was expected and more than you projected.
- It is part of your character. What you do when nobody is looking matters. You don’t cut corners when striving for excellence.
- It is noticed by others. You don’t have to toot your own horn when you excel at what you do. Others will be your cheerleaders, so resist the temptation to stoop to bragging about what you have done. Bragging cheapens your reward.
- It is the result of more than just your own efforts. It might be your CEO, your manger, your coach, your spouse, your friends, your co-workers, but someone has contributed to your achievements. It may just be the prayers of your Mom…but somebody has been there in your corner to help you on your journey. Always give credit where credit is due. Thank those that have helped you get to the top.
Excellence is what every company and team talks about, but few have truly pursued it with a whole heart. It is more than a slogan on the wall. It is a way of life. It is never settling for how things are today and the successes of the past. It is realizing that there is always another mountain to climb, another victory to pursue, another dream to fulfill.
Life is short; live every day with purpose and passion. What would your life look like if everything you did was done with excellence? How would it affect our world if everyone did that?