If you watch a professional athlete training, they practice and practice and practice until they master a skill, and then they practice it regularly to ensure that they don’t lose it.
If you watch a professional at work they can make their “skill” seem effortless. The race car driver, the soccer player, the hockey player … their skills can take our breath away sometimes, but they make it seem effortless.
The same kind of dedication comes into play in any profession … if you want to be the best then you need to work at it. If you don’t want to be just another “fill-in-the blank” then you have to make a commitment to mastering your “trade”.
Talent is not enough! The world is filled with talented people who “didn’t make it”.
Intelligence is not enough! The world is filled with very bright people who are not living up to their potential.
Talent and intelligence when coupled with a good work ethic can definitely create a superstar … and there are many examples of people who, through sheer effort managed to rise to the top!
So … what do you need to do?
1. Whatever your role is … find the people that are the most successful at that role and understand why they are successful.
2. Isolate the skills, knowledge and traits of the top performers.
3. Understand how you could emulate them.
4. Develop a plan, that you will commit to executing, to get your skills, knowledge and traits as close to the top performers as possible.
What does that mean?
Perhaps you are in sales. Identify the top performers in your company, and understand why they are successful.
- Perhaps the top rep has great relationships in a big spending account.
- Maybe the number two rep has great time management skills and is incredibly productive.
- The number three rep might have in depth technical knowledge that they use to differentiate from competition.
You need to develop a plan to create great relationships in your accounts … What does that mean? How do you do it? Who can help? What training do you need?
You need to learn. practice and master time management skills that will work for you, to make you super productive.
You need to increase your technical knowledge and set a bar that is achievable … but a stretch. It needs to be enough to differentiate from your competition.
If all of that sounds like work … it is! That is what successful people do, they invest in themselves, work hard and get to become great at what they do. Then they make it look easy … which is what is so deceptive to everyone else looking on!
“Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” … Jim Ryun
Kevin Dee is Chairman and founder of Eagle (a Professional Staffing Company)
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