I summarized the answer in my book (only in German: “Business Fitness: escape mediocrity!”) in eight principles, which I call “peak performance principles.”
Here they are briefly. For detailed tips on implementation, I recommend you apply for a exploration session with me, personally.
Attention: Do not ask yourself if you have ever heard of them (everyone did!), but to what extent you apply them. I suggest evaluating each principle on a scale of 1 to 10.
Principle 1: Clarity. This comes above all. I have written several times about the fact that lacking clarity is one of the greatest obstacles to peak performance. Attention: Clarity begins in your own head!
Principle 2: Integrity. People are looking a lot more at what you do, how you do it, and what the results are instead of what you say. That is why it is so important that you do what you say you do. This...
There is one aspect of sustainable success, which is both fundamental and most disregarded by most:
What many overlook: success without absolute clarity is luck and cannot be repeated or only with high effort.
Yet, the creation of clarity is not difficult, but requires willpower and discipline. I will give you some help here:
Here they are from my German book “Business Fitness: Escape mediocrity!“:
As I write these lines, I’m sitting in the Parc Milan, a beautiful park in Lausanne a few meters from my apartment, and I’m watching the colorful hustle and bustle. Small groups of friends, families, and couples are everywhere, enjoying the evening in the warm, early summer air and having fun.
We are in the final stages of the first wave of the corona pandemic here in Switzerland, and no one knows if there will be a second one. The so-called excess mortality rate is almost non-existent compared to flu years. Apparently, we all acted in time and with enough courage.
I also dare to predict that we will get out of the economic mess faster than some people fear simply because we combine enormous strengths and a strong work ethic.
Here is my point: I find it quite simply enormous and impressive how we, as civilized people, have managed to deal with such a threat. You can complain about our shortcomings as much as you like, but such a concerted global action (with some...
Sounds overly simplistic? Wait a moment: A key reason for mediocre performance is quite often that you violate exactly this simple rule: you start off slow, after lunch you lower productivity, and you slow down towards the end of the day.
What you need instead, is to install new habits. How? That’s the topic for another memo. Meanwhile, just...
The problem with all execution of good intentions is that we all are weak. Our willpower is very limited. Since we have known this for thousands of years (that’s why we have been obliged to follow the 10 commandments, for instance), we know since a couple of years that this weakness is physical.
That’s why many leaders feel decision fatigue after half of the day. Again, this is no “soft fact”, but brutal physical reality.
In one of my latest blog posts, I wrote that productivity is a habit and many have learned to be unproductive without realizing it – even and foremost senior managers.
I received some questions regarding this provocative conclusion, because it is a rather uncomfortable idea for most of us:
We are consciously unproductive! Who wants this? The answer: In principle, we all do. Because productivity means that we produce results. And thus also bad results.
Since no one wants those, our brain has mechanisms that limit our productivity.
Last weekend was Pentecost. Do you know why these holidays even exist? Chances are you don’t have an exact answer unless you’re a practicing Christian.
The interesting thing is that whether you know or understand the background of a holiday, you can still deal with it. This reminds me of the laws of nature. Whether you know or understand them or not, they will still affect you.
Gravity, for example, doesn’t care what you think about it or whether you agree with it. If you drop a plate, it will inevitably move towards the ground and probably shatter once it hits the floor. Therefore, the best strategy is to use gravity in a favorable way rather than lamenting it.
Why am I telling you this? Well, the same connections apply to “mental laws”—they exist regardless of your belief or ignorance. The winners in life will always be those who make better use of them than others.
If you have followed me for a while, you know sales activities are not limited to conversations with potential customers, but a reality of our daily life, be it professional or private; whenever you want to convince someone of something, you “sell.”
So, what is the “secret recipe” to become more persuasive, to “sell” more?
Did you notice? Those who thrive (people and businesses) do something extremely well or they do something in a unique way. Or even both.
Look at the most successful companies, Apple for instance, or Siemens, SAP, and many almost unknown SMBs: in the areas they thrive, there is at least one of these to elements in place: excellence or uniqueness. And they have business models that make these distinctions profitable.
Often, this is left to chance or random evolution. Instead, I suggest considering these three steps:
To which group do you belong: 20, 60, or 20? You don’t know what I’m talking about? Ok, here is the resolution: the longer I support business leaders in achieving substantial success growth, the more it solidifies my 20-60-20 rule. It simply states the following:
This distribution is almost always true, no matter what you want to achieve. How does this knowledge help you, as a manager and someone who wants to implement something new? Here is my tip:
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