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Do you practice excellence?

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Do you approach your work with your primary goal and outcome being excellence? Aristotle famously said you are what you repeatedly do. Are you in the habit of practicing excellence?

It’s easy to be mediocre. If you look at a bell curve, you’ll see poor performance on one side of the curve and excellent performance on the other. Mediocrity takes up the massive bulk in the middle. It’s easy to be mediocre. It’s easy to be neither good nor bad but somewhere in the middle.

What is difficult is to be excellent. Being excellent takes more effort. It takes more energy. You have to try a lot harder to achieve excellence. To be mediocre you just have to do the work. To be excellent you have to do the work with an unmistakable passion and energy. You also have to do the work with the desired outcome being excellence.

What about you? You would be excellent in your prospecting calls if you focused on creating value for your dream clients — even at the first stage of their commitment (their time and attention). It’s a lot harder to be excellent at prospecting and winning appointments than it is to be mediocre.

You could be excellent during your sales calls and give your entire focus to your dream client by being deeply engaged. But because you’ve made a lot of sales calls in the past, it’s easy to let your enthusiasm slip and become mediocre.

You could deliver what your clients expect of you and that might be enough. But you could also invest the energy and passion required to deliver something better than what’s expected. You could deliver excellence.

Mediocrity gets lost; it’s easily forgotten. No one talks about mediocrity. What they talk about is excellence.

Excellence provides meaning. It’s built on passion, and it generates further passion from both you and your clients. Excellence defines. It differentiates. If you are going to do the work, you might as well go all the way and practice excellence.

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S. Anthony Iannarino is the managing director of B2B Sales Coach & Consultancy, a boutique sales coaching and consulting company, and an adjunct faculty member at Capital University’s School of Management and Leadership. For more information, go