I have a good friend who is a sales and marketing professional. He has his own firm and represents a number of well-known brands and product lines. He is an amazing sales professional, the kind of guy who could “sell ice to Eskimos!” He is excellent at what he does.
He sent me the following quote last week from author Ralph Marston: “Excellence is not a skill. It is an attitude.”
LeBron James of the NBA’s Cleveland Cavaliers is considered by many to be the best player in professional basketball today. His team is playing in the NBA Finals against Stephen Curry and the Golden State Warriors. Some have said that Curry is the best shooter in the history of basketball. James and Curry are both excellent basketball players.
My friend, LeBron James, and Stephen Curry are all excellent at what they do. They possess the skills that allow them to achieve excellence. But Marston reminds us that excellence is not a skill; it is an attitude. People who are excellent at a skill, first make a decision that they want to be excellent. They make a decision, and then they have the attitude to get them to excellence. This attitude says, “I want to be excellent; I’m going to work hard to achieve excellence; I am committed to excellence in all that I do.”
Excellence starts with an attitude. The skill comes later. If you want to be excellent at something, you must first decide that you want to be excellent. Then you must develop the attitude that helps you commit to achieving excellence. This attitude consists of things like hard work, persistence, perseverance, positivity, enthusiasm, and energy. With this type of attitude, you can achieve your biggest dreams. With this type of attitude, excellence is possible. But remember, excellence is not as much about the skill you develop as it is about the attitude that pushes you and motivates you to do excellent things.
As leaders, we must have this attitude of excellence. We must model this for our teams so they too will strive for excellence in all they do.
Thanks for reading,
P.S. – Check out my website at http://www.jvearle.com and keep me in mind if you hear of any opportunities to share my thoughts on leadership.