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The One Percent Solution

by Philip E. Humbert, PhD

Many years ago, someone told me that the key to success is not doing something big or spectacular, but doing the little things extraordinarily well.

When we think of Olympic athletes, it's tempting to pretend that they are somehow "different". We tell ourselves they were born with incredible strength or unusual talent, or had training that we could never get for ourselves. We look at Michael Jordon in sports, or we compare ourselves to Barbra Streisand as an entertainer, and say, "I could never do that."

While there is truth in acknowledging their incredible talent, there is also a lie in pretending that because we don't have their genetic gifts, we are somehow excused from the necessity of doing our best. That is simply not true! The vast majority of highly successful people, in any area of life, are simply those who worked a bit harder, stayed a bit longer, and did a bit more.

The highest paid people in any industry earn many times more than the average income. Is that because they are 100 times smarter? Are they 50 times more ambitious? Do they work 20 times harder or do they have more hours in a day? Of course not!

The highest paid, most successful people do the little things extremely well. They remember the details, acknowledge their friends, and they keep their promises. They return phone calls on time. They remember to say "Please" and "Thank You!", and they smile. They get to work just a bit earlier, make one or two more calls or stay just a bit later at the end of the day. The simple truth is this: They go the extra mile, and it makes a difference.

They take care of the "little things", and the difference is reflected in their paychecks!

What opportunities do you have to improve your performance by just 1 percent this week? It's call the "1 Percent Solution", and over time, it makes all the difference!

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Disclaimer: These items have come to me through various sources. I have included the author's name whenever possible. If you wrote any of these and would like credit, please write me with your name and the title of the article.
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