In this busy time of year - with days when it's tough just to keep your head above water - I've been thinking about what it takes to get better at the work we do, beyond the simple act of just continuing to crank it out.
I've been wondering how we can do a better job of helping incentives rise above their tarnished reputation and take their rightful - but rightfully limited - place in broader efforts to improve performance. I've been reflecting on how to be a better and more trusted advisor to the clients I have the opportunity to serve.
And then I ran into Seth Godin's recent post on creating competitive advantage, in which he chides us for thinking we create advantage simply by staying at work longer or returning emails faster than our cohorts. Instead, he claims, we succeed because (and only because)...
... you confronted and overcame anxiety and the lizard brain better than anyone else. Perhaps because you overcame inertia and actually got significantly better at your craft, even when it was uncomfortable because you were risking failure. When you increase your discernment, maximize your awareness of the available options and then go ahead and ship work that scares others... that's when you succeed.
More time on the problem isn't the way. More guts is. When you expose yourself to the opportunities that scare you, you create something scarce, something others won't do.
So, fellow strivers-for-success: Scared anyone today?
There's still time...
Image courtesy of sodahead.com