It’s rare that someone or some company aspires to be average, and yet it’s the exception rather than the rule when the average glass ceiling is broken. While what it takes to go beyond average might be minute, why is it that not many achieve this level of service? As a motivated business owner, I see average as my enemy and something that I must guard myself from becoming. I’ve got to hand it to average, it does a great job of looking so easy, attractive and irresistible. Maybe that’s why organizations everywhere fall into the trap of thinking their customers, clients, shareholders, partners and employees will be ok with average results. I mean, average is good enough, right?
We are faced with a dilemma each and every day we show up. Choice number one (a choice of "HAVE" to do), to go about your tasks, fulfill your obligations, check off items on your to-do list and to arrive at the end of the day having completed it, in an average manner. Choice number two (a choice of "GET" to do), being excited about the opportunities provided, being a problem solver, looking forward to achieving great things, promoting change for the better. I don’t understand how or why anyone chooses option 1, I see it as letting life happen as opposed to making like happen.
Average affects everything, the relationships in your life, the decisions that you make, the opportunities that are presented to you and the way you live your life. Average holds you back by telling you everything is good enough and that everything is going to be okay. Seriously, would you rather be okay or would you like to thrive and excel?
Here are 7 reasons why average is your enemy:
- Average doesn’t let you take responsibility. When the buck doesn’t stop with you and you feel the need to blame someone else, you are falling into the category of average. Once you start the blame game, it’s very hard to stop it. Consider for a moment being on the receiving side of a situation where you are not able to find a responsible party, no one is taking responsibility. It’s very frustrating and unsatisfying to not have a resolution. Your calls for help are answered by verbiage like, “Sorry, that’s our policy,” or “That is not our department, I’m not sure why they do it that way.”
- Average provides little opportunity. When you aspire to be average, opportunity will not often come knocking. Unfortunately when it does knock, you usually will not recognize it as opportunity. More often, it will be seen as an inconvenience, too challenging to act upon and if acted upon you will be so deep in average, your climb up may be too much of a burden to get out of average.
- Average robs you of your creativity. Average is holding your creative side at bay. Stuck in a routine, not excited about what life has to offer and unable to see your potential? Whether you are a number cruncher, a burger flipper or podcast host, use your creative brain cells and maximize your potential. When average robs you of your creativity, you take a colorful world and make it grey and beige.
- Average is extremely contagious, immediately stop spreading it. Ever notice that average people tend to hang out with each other? They clock in at nine and they leave at five. Average often expresses itself in poor diet, poor outlook on life and a woe is me attitude. Average creates a victim and holds you down. Since average is contagious, other people that caught the condition commiserate with you and make you believe, "it is what it is."
- Average keeps you from looking at all the possibilities. As your enemy, average tricks you into thinking when you solve a problem satisfactorily you can move onto something else. Instead of stopping here, go beyond satisfactory and move into exemplary. Think back to an experience you had with an company that provided a service in such a way that your expectations were exceeded. Help someone become a raving fan of your work, exceed their expectations and you will be hooked. Destroy your enemy, average, and you will be happy you did.
- Average equates to good enough. When good enough becomes enough, it’s time to find something better to do. What I do know about you is this, I know that you were not put on this earth to be good enough. I welcome the argument from anyone reading this to share with me your story of why good enough is good enough.
- Average holds you back from growth and keeps you in your comfort zone. While I admit I do find a measure of relaxation in my comfort zone, I will have to also admit if I graphed the time in my career when I grew the least, it was the same time I found myself in a comfortable routine. I liked the routine, but I hated the lack of growth. Once I started to step outside of my comfort zone and into unfamiliar terrain I usually met temporary setbacks followed by explosive growth. When you are average, things are comfortable, but everything, including the comfort zone, is temporary. Instead of failing via lack of growth, I was determined to step out of my comfort zone, and wait for growth to happen. Working in this pattern, I have always been successful.
When you start to believe in your heart that good enough isn’t, you start to see your world through an entirely different lens. You become more responsible for your actions and your behavior, you start to make your own opportunities, you develop creativity through-the-roof, your possibilities become limitless and you take risks because you know the rewards far exceed the dangers. You begin to spread your message with purpose and conviction and you step away from average and destroy your enemy. When you first start your journey the flywheel becomes tough to move, but once the flywheel is cranking at full speed, the enemy (average) will never stand a chance.