I am currently sitting down in a Starbucks cafe in Subvarnabhu Airport, Thailand waiting for my flight to Almaty, Kazakhstan. So, I thought to be more productive, I hope to write to you on this topic of Excellence.
I recently gave a few talks to the Immigration and Checkpoints Authority of Singapore, Sime Darby and Domino’s Pizza and can’t help but ask what is Excellence and why does it matter to us? I mean, honestly… why should we display excellence in what we do?
Before I begin, may I ask you what is the difference between Excellence and Perfectionism? (Do answer the question before you read on).
Excellence, to me, is the desire to constantly want to be better in what we do. We look through our processes and system of doing things and want to make them better. This means that processes need to be as carefully thought out as possible and then implemented.
Perfectionism is the whole idea of doing things right. It has to work very well and absolutely have no flaws in the process. It has to be simply… perfect! Anything less is really fowled upon.
I don’t know about you but I find the idea of being perfectionist pretty scary and somehow not very useful. People who are perfectionist in nature tend to criticise everything and also refuse to do anything because they know that things might not work or turn out well. People of excellence, on the other hand, will give considerable thought in the whole process and do what they think its best at that moment. It might not be perfect, but they know that if things are not implemented or done in the first place, it cannot be improved.
However, excellence in what we do is not achieved simply by desire, but also by putting a lot of effort in making sure that we constantly improve our abilities. Ask any athlete who prepares for the Olympics, they have to constantly train and discipline themselves. As a Public Speaker and Trainer, I have committed myself to constantly read and summarise what I have learnt every single month. There were times when I spent many nights just reading and rereading even on topics that I am extremely familiar about. I can recall the countless times where I literally was ‘working on myself’ when other people were watching TV or going out. There is a price to pay for excellence and somehow, it does not come cheap.
So, why subject yourself to hard work and discipline? Here are some reasons that why you must display excellence:
1. Displaying Excellence is lucrative in today’s society. How many people do you know can actually display intense knowledge and skill in what they do? These people are always rewarded with a much higher pay and return on their time.
2. Displaying Excellence causes a person to be proud of what they do. It is in every human being’s desire to constantly want to be better in what they do. Your intrinsic self-worth is dramatically increased.
3. Displaying Excellence commands the respect of people. If you see people doing things extremely well, won’t you envy or praise them? This causes a person to feel proud in what they do and will increase their desire to do things better.
I hope you will display excellence in what you do, whether in your personal or professional life. Anything that is worth doing, deserves to be done with excellence.