On a previous blog I introduced the great work of Matthew Syed in his book Bounce. The premise of Bounce, based on convincing data, is that purposeful practice and other attributes drive excellence and success more than raw talent. Now Tony Schwartz in an Harvard Business Review article proclaims that leaders can fuel excellence at anything.
The following is a checklist for our own personal excellence, combining Syed’s work, Schwartz’s leadership environment (which we need to develop for ourselves) and a few of my thoughts. It provides a framework for excellence. I challenge you to write out an outline for yourself before you mentally click off the blog!
1. Set our minds for achieving Personal Excellence.
You and I have to believe we can become masterful at what we’re doing. This is more important than being overtaken by words like “gifted” or ” talented.”
2. Define our driving purpose.
We need to tie our personal excellence objective to a larger goal or mission. What is our purpose in life? (Read a recent blog of mine on life purpose.)
3. Outline a very specific plan with milestones along the way.
Be specific. Be realistic but recognize that processes lead to results and everything is a process.
4. Practice with purpose; purposefully practice.
Have concentrated times of purposeful practice interrupted with appropriate periods of refresh.
5. Celebrate milestones.
Don’t wait for others to celebrate success. If others recognize us, it’s a bonus. We need to celebrate ourselves! I’m not talking about just feel-good mush. This is acknowledging meaningful, measurable, achievements along the way.
6. Get purposeful, objective, regular feedback. Apply the learning.
Get objective data. Develop a learning process. Practice improvements. Improve practice. Use coaches; we need outside viewpoints from people that care about our personal success.
7. Get masterful and don’t stop.
Keep raising the bar. Do 1 through 6 again. Get into our self-identified hall of fame. Enjoy the ride.
Being accountable involves a plan of action. We are respectful to ourselves by believing that we personally can become excellent. Be abundant. Focus on what we already have to be great, not what we don’t!
A framework and blog is easy to publish. Executing to excellence is darn hard. That’s what makes it worth it!
Live the Triangle,