What’s Your “Perfect Swing”?

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What does award-winning performance mean to you?

I mean specifically.

In your business, in your work, what does award-winning performance look like, sound like, feel like? How do you recognize it in yourself?

It’s been said that what gets measured gets done. Others have said that what gets measured gets managed.

I disagree with both of those statements.

The truth is this: What gets measured gets measured. Nothing more, nothing less.

What gets measured gets measured.

What happens next is entirely up to you.

Measuring is just a first step. But it’s a critical first step, which is why I asked my initial question: What does award-winning performance mean to you? What I’m really asking is this: How do you measure your award-winning performance? What are the benchmarks that you use? Because until you know what the measures are—until you know what award-winning performance looks like, sounds like, and feels like for you—you won’t be able to know how close you are to achieving it.

If you don’t know what a perfect 10 is for you, you might go through your life hitting 8s and thinking that’s fine. And it might be for some people. But not for award-winning performers.

If you’ve ever been even marginally serious about golf, you’ve probably known the frustration of trying to achieve that perfect swing. You try and try, but it just feels awkward and strenuous. But then, one day…magic! It just all comes together, and you think to yourself, “Ahh…so that’s it!” And now you start to achieve “muscle memory.” Your body knows what a perfect swing feels like. Does that mean your next swing will be perfect? Probably not—but now you have that muscle memory, and that muscle memory acts as a measure. And once your muscles have that measure—that memory—it’ll be easier to reproduce that perfect swing.

It’s the same with award-winning performance. Once you know what award-winning performance feels like—and sounds like, and looks like, and smells like, and tastes like—it’ll be easier to reproduce it in the future.

Think about the last time you really “hit it out of the park” in your work. Picture it in your mind, really “re-experience” it. Are you there yet? Now allow yourself to think, “Ahh…so that’s it!” That’s your award-winning performance. That’s your perfect swing.

And that’s what you have to strive to reproduce, each and every time.


About the Author:

29-time Emmy Award winner and Hall of Fame keynote speaker Bill Stainton, CSP is an expert on Innovation, Creativity, and Breakthrough Thinking. He helps leaders and their teams come up with innovative solutions — on demand — to their most challenging problems.
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