Getting Results; Get it done well
I met Donna, who was one of those high energy types where even keeping the conversation focused on one topic was hard. She had her hand in anything. I counted five different businesses, most of them unrelated. And once I started to probe deeper, counted a string of past business ventures, and dozens and dozens of new business ideas.
Almost all of them had failed or were failing, despite the good ideas behind them, and Donna being a charming lady who to top it off, was one of the people with the biggest heart I have ever met.
It was clear. Donna had a problem to stick to existing ideas. She lacked the persistence to work till completion so to speak. “I have ADHD” was her excuse. “I get bored, and maybe not even that, I have so many other exiting ideas.”
Donna scored really low on character dimension 3: getting Results…
Character dimensions 3: To get Results and Finish well
This dimension is about the
- be prepared, focused and decisive,
- in touch with your strength, and
- to lose well.
- In other words: the capability to impose Self- Discipline: controlling ones’ words, actions and reactions
“Lots of people work hard, are committed, and do not produce impressive results. They just do ‘a good job’”
How many of you or your employees do just ‘a good job’?
The interesting thing about this dimension is that it has a lot to do with your level of Conscientiousness. In psychological research, the level of Conscientiousness has the highest correlation with measured success…
The main character flaw in this dimension is being ‘Impulsive’ instead of ‘Focused and Decisive’. Lets’ start with Focus:
- To be in control of Impulsiveness
- Means doing Due Diligence before action is taken
- Non-gratifying preparations are done instead of skipped
- Getting an organization ready before a new change is announced belongs here as well.
Ever met those people who are always starting new things, and never complete them as there is already the next big thing? This is the dimension where ADHD patients suffer; that is those that never learned to control these impulses as having ADHD is typically also having an endless source of creativity.
One of the most important things for Outgoing, Bold leaders, is to get a counterpart with them that is almost their opposite, someone focused on execution, as it is the downfall of many outgoing personalities that they tend to rush to conclusions and false starts.
Focus means accepting limits
This would be a good moment to quote Warren Buffet:
“I have reached my success by saying ‘no’ to 99% of the good opportunities that were presented to me”.
Do not for one moment think that Warren is not a man of action. But he relentlessly focuses on only a few things. Things he knows, he is good at. Warren embraces limits.
To have the ability to decide, and go for it.
- Willingness to make hard calls
- Perseverance to not give up on the ideal (but able to cancel a strategy)
Even if you are in control of your impulsiveness, and have learned to focus on a few things that you know should make you successful, there is one last thing you must master in this dimension. The ability to decide, and then go for it. And once you go for it, to persevere.
That is where many of those people blessed with cautiousness, who never take rash decisions fall short. They tend to make no decision at all. That is where the bold, outgoing types have the advantage, as they dare to pull the trigger and go for it.
Another aspect of this is that when results don’t happen quickly; you know when to adjust your strategy, but to still persevere towards the ideal. We called that ‘the ability to Finish well’. In other words, you know when to stop, and when to adjust, and when to not give up.
- To be in touch with your strength
You can be focused, decisive and persistent, but you could still struggle in this dimension if you would be trying to do that is just so ‘not you’. You will shine when you are in touch with your strength. When you know your weaknesses and find others around you to deal with those is when you get the best results.
An important question in this second aspect is:
- Is your Profession, Colleagues, and Industry making you fully Engaged?
At the highest level of this aspect, is where you can say “I am following my calling”. At the lower levels we find people who hate their job, their colleagues or even their profession. No wonder they don’t succeed.
- To have the ability to Lose well
Life isn’t always a string of wins. Things will go wrong. HIGH ACHIEVERS actually let go of things they are not the best at. They see what they can learn of the loss, but then let go. But there are people that just cannot let go. It is as if they hate losing so much that they keep trying to change this outcome, without changing their strategy.
WINNERS LOSE WELL
LOSERS OFTEN BECOME PEOPLE WHO NEVER WIN
Because they do the same things over and over that led to the last loss
In the military world it is accepted that you now and then need to retreat, in order to regroup. Many believe that Hitler could have defeated the Soviet Union if he would have allowed his armies to now and then regroup, instead of having to immediately counter attack if they lost some territory to the Russians. If Hitler had defeated the Red Armies, he would likely have won the War. So the Nazi’s were ultimately defeated because Hitler could not finish well…