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Are You Bigger Than Your Performance?

If you use grades, sales numbers, winning cases, closing deals or promotions as your measuring stick for yourself, you will be dissatisfied.

 

I’d won again. It was another pelt on my wall. They handed me a plaque that said I was Sales Representative of the Year. My metrics were impressive. When they showed my numbers on the big screen, there was no denying my performance. I even got promoted as a result of those objective measurements. But then the next year, I was in last place. My performance was excruciatingly bad. Those same measurements that made me feel successful, now made me feel worthless.

 

I was the same person each year. The performance was different, but I was the same Dave.  Unfortunately, at that point in my life I was negotiating with my character.  I was doing what I thought I needed to do to be successful.  I wasn’t breaking policy or crossing the line into anything illegal. But I was compromising my character in an effort to hit those objective metrics of success. When I look back on it now, both the winning and the losing were unsatisfactory and left me unfulfilled.

 

Later in life, with that same company and in similar circumstances I experienced successes and recognition for those same objective measures of success. Plus, I experienced years when my name was absent from the awards lists.  But no matter what those objective measures of success said about my performance, I was fulfilled.  Why?  Because I had learned that I was bigger than my performance. Who I was being was more important than those metrics that I used to use to define me.

 

If you use grades, sales numbers, winning cases, closing deals or promotions as your measuring stick for yourself, you will be dissatisfied.  What matters is who you are while you work towards those metrics. Nobody at the end of your career will ever remind you about your great numbers in 2023.  Trust me, I am still fortunate to get calls from people I haven’t worked with since 2002. When they call, they never talk about how we hit our sales goals.

The most satisfying and long lasting legacy we will have is on the people we get to influence everyday of our lives. What type of influence are we having? What will they remember about who we were, whether those objective metrics looked good or bad? Those are the conversations that happen 20 years later.  Those conversations are really the mark of our success.

 

Questions:

●      Do you remember your objective metrics from 5 years ago?

●      What do you remember about the positive impact someone else had on you in the past?

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