High performers are show offs


In my many years of working with a wide range of companies and organizations, covering different industries, HR associations and small businesses, it is evident that, as the old saying goes, success “isn’t rocket science.” High-performance organizations and individuals do have certain things in common that make them efficient and productive. Some factors drive high performance.

The question you may be asking is: “What do they do that others don’t? How is their thinking process? What makes them above-average, efficient and high performers while others are not?”

Many would have thought that high performers have superior talents or skills, so they make wise decisions. However, I have observed that high performers do show off their results and are open about their performance.

In a way, high performers are show-offs. But before you get into my case and criticize me for my views, let me explain.

Their showing off is not about bragging or arrogance. Unlike many self-proclaimed experts and gurus in social media who project feigned experiences and expertise, they have had very little of it. High performers show off by bringing their best to everything they do. It’s about being focused and creating results that benefit the stakeholders in any situation. Showing off means creating value through accomplishment.

You can detect them through the following traits or features they show:

1. High performers may seem absurd but are brave in their endeavors.

Top performers make choices that others don’t make. They try things without knowing whether or not they’ll work. They refuse to play it safe. They challenge the status quo and may sometimes seem ridiculous and audacious. But they are innovators.

Innovation means going first, trying things without knowing whether you’ll succeed. It takes courage and a willingness to let go of what used to work, what has always worked and everything that made you successful up to this point. They may be telling themselves, “I don’t know what works. So I sure am going to find out.” Their insistence on this may irritate a lot of higher-ups who want to avoid rocking the boat. Still, they brilliantly and bravely present their case and challenge the leadership to take on the responsibility to make it happen.

2. Action rules. Speed wins with high performers.

Action Rules. Speed Wins in High Performance. The most effective organizations I know have a tremendous propensity for action and speed. If an idea is agreed upon as good, responsibility for its implementation is immediately assigned, guidelines for accountability are established, all the support mechanisms are in place and they get on with it.

Now, here is the key: Top performers fear indecision much more than they fear mistakes. They rightly accept that mistakes can be corrected, but standing still in a constantly moving marketplace can be fatal. And they want things to happen fast.

Many wonder why they do not get the business. They seem lost and wonder why they are fired even before they have begun. It is simply because “I’ll work on it tomorrow...” “I’ll get back to you as soon as...” While many are still checking their calendars to find a time to respond to their customers, co-workers, or vendors, High Performers are checking their watches.

3. High performers are relentless in their quest for improvement.

Every company gives lip service to the idea of constant improvement. Every employee practically memorizes their corporate value of “Excellence and Continuous Improvement.” But do you really see what steps they have taken today to assure you’ll be better tomorrow? Is it truly a company policy? Or is being better tomorrow just a slogan?

For top-performing organizations and individuals, relentless improvement is part of their daily work. High performers are relentless and restless. High performers “show off” by being at ease with the reality that something unexpected will happen. They move forward, not frozen with uncertainty. They embrace the unknown and prepare for it.

In reality, truly high performers do not toot their own horns but allow the results to speak loudly for them. While some individuals may achieve success quietly, others boldly showcase their performance, earning recognition and inspiring those around them. High performers proudly display their abilities, aiming to garner support and motivate others to reach similar heights. After all, true excellence is not just about personal achievement; it’s about uplifting others along the journey. They may be branded as “Show Off’s” simply because they have enough results and stuff to show.

(Francis Kong’s podcast “Inspiring Excellence” is now available on Spotify, Apple, Google, or other podcast streaming platforms.)

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