Don't Tire of Doing the Simple
We are clearly in the highlight era. It started with Sportscenter in the 80s and has been on a roll ever since. Social media has provided rocket fuel to the now booming personal highlight video industry - at a basketball tournament last summer people were purchasing highlight videos for their second grade son … second grade!
As you are fully aware, Sportscenter doesn’t show too many singles. They don’t show the bounce pass for a layup or the lineman doing his job snap after snap. No, no, that’s not what gets you on ESPN.
You have to make a great play. Extraordinary.
A regular play won’t do.
And, I get it. That’s what people want to see.
It’s what gets clicks.
Why Should We Care?
Fortunately for us un-extraordinary people, clicks don’t correlate to excellence.
Simplicity and consistency do.
Unfortunately, too many people are fooled into believing Sportscenter. We watch them so often now people are beginning to believe the highlights are the mark of excellence, not winning or performing at your best.
That’s not where excellence resides. It’s in the dark, early mornings filled with grueling work. It’s in disappointment and the recovery from those failures that caused it. It’s in the consistency of showing up day after day after day with the same determination and hope you started with.
It looks nothing like a highlight. Nothing.
And, we’re doing a major disservice to those we lead by honoring the highlight over the simple. We must be intentional about recognizing and lifting up the simple, consistent work that leads to excellence.
I’m discussing this from a sporting perspective, but it clearly applies to the corporate world. Consider the celebration of the last big sale or promotion at your company compared to the celebration of the employee that hasn’t missed a deadline or a day of work in the last five years.
REAL TALK - Action Steps
We can’t get tired of doing the simple. The draw is there, and probably always will be. But, excellence requires the daily service of the mundane. When we begin to seek the approval of the highlight we are sacrificing the essence of what excellence is.
Highlights just seem to happen for those that have been faithful to the simplicity and consistency excellence requires. The interesting thing is, they’re not impressed by themselves … maybe because they were there for all the work and failures leading up to that point.
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I'm a teacher, coach, and parent seeking excellence while defining success on my own terms.