As the title suggests, we’re going to spend this post discussing how to avoid mediocrity. This topic reminds me of a quote I read in high school that comes from late pro football player Junior Seau. It was something along the lines of “I am not afraid to fail. I am afraid to be mediocre.” That resonated with me in a mighty way. Even in high school I remember being amazed by the truth of that. I would rather fail big, even though I don’t want to fail, than be mediocre. A life of mediocrity is not a life well lived. With that said, let’s get down to what we can do to avoid mediocrity:
1. Analyze– Assess your small failures. Where have you failed in marketing in the last few months? When have you struggled to outsource something? These aren’t things that will devastate your business. We’re talking about situations where you lose a little bit of time, or a small amount of money. If you find that you aren’t failing in small ways, well, you need to! If you aren’t experiencing small failures, you’re likely not taking small risks, either, which means you aren’t going for a great business. You’re making do with a mediocre one.
2. Seek– You need to seek help. Even if your business is a 1-person show, you can’t do everything on your own. And if you do, at least some of what you’re doing will be mediocre. No one is the best at every aspect of running a business, and even in the case of the mythical person who is that multitalented, there are only so many hours in a day. Our energy is finite. Seek help in areas where you aren’t the best, or lack the time and energy needed to be the best.
3. Research-Engage in research and development. What’s new in your business? What are some things you can try that you haven’t tried before? What are the trends in your industry, and what do you see on the horizon? Do a SWOT analysis to look at strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats. If you haven’t thought about opportunities in a while, you’re probably stuck in mediocre land.
4. Master– It’s crucial to master the basics, the timeless principles that never change. This is about familiarizing ourselves with the things we know work. We know that if you touch the right number of people the right way in business, you’re going to get results. We know that if we get the one thing we least want to do knocked out first, it’s going to free up time for the rest of the day. We know that planning our calendar works really well. If we haven’t mastered the tried and true basics, we’re likely to wind up in mediocre land.
5. Carve– Carve out time to evaluate yourself. Take time to assess yourself. It’s easy to get busy and forget to keep an eye on whether you’re growing and improving. When that happens, you may look up months from now and go “Whoa! I’ve been in mediocre land for 12 months and didn’t even know it!” So make time to get away, figure out where you’re mediocre, and then make and act upon a plan of action to change things.
You’re now armed with five ways to keep yourself far away from mediocrity. Now I want to encourage you to act on these five things, say goodbye to mediocre land, and make it a better than amazing day!