Output is the result of your engagement in activity- performance. But Duty, usefulness and Standards are the means by which we can determine if we are performing well enough. Without them we are in a vacuum It is a question of what we are giving out and how useful it is- especially to others. It is also the maximization of the opportunity of the larger spectrum of life itself through the maximization of the micro-opportunities that are made available to us everyday.It is not only what we expect of ourselves but also what others expect of us- and YES that counts a great deal. What others expect of us is a very complicated issue that is addressed in more detail in my work people dynamics in the SPiD-UP® book series.
It starts with first understanding what is possible for us to be and taking the right steps in order to reach it. Peak performance is concerned with being of use- not to only ourselves but to others as the means by which we can be happy. Indeed we can be our happiest when we are at our best but it is our duty to others that gives us the opportunity to be our best. Hence our happiness has everything to do with others. A man who goes through thick and thin and succeeds in providing the needs of his family sleeps well with satisfaction He has fulfilled his obligations to others. It is the same when he is at work. When he leaves work at the end of the day knowing that he has done a great job, and his superiors, colleagues and customers are happy, he goes home with a good feeling. He might even attempt to meet that same standard the next day.
The feeling will be almost opposite if he knew he didn’t meet the standards. People are involved in different task and outputs are not the same for everyone. However each task has a purpose and an objective: there is a reason why a specific person is chosen to do it. When one performs a task for themselves it still has a purpose and in most cases it will be a question of duty and responsibility. I get a good feeling when I am able to clean my house. Frankly it is not something I like doing but I do occasionally manage to create the right mindset to get it done because it needs to be done.
It is an obligation to myself and to others. But does it meet the standards? If I was paying someone to do my cleaning, how would I feel if they gave me the same standard I was giving myself. The answer to that and is not positive. In fact I had a lady friend walk in and ask me when I was going to clean up barely an hour after I had been cleaning. It takes an emotional intelligence guru not to take offence at such comments.
It is important to find ways to measure what is coming out of the activity in terms of quality and quantity but that is another story for another day. Our performance will be a waste of time if it was only about ourselves. Our scope of usefulness will be limited to ourselves and so will our influence. When others feel we are not meeting the accepted standards or not fulfilling our obligation, there is negative feedback. This negative feed back affects us whether we want to admit it or not but it is only an indicator of the effect of what we are or not doing. It affords us the opportunity to make the changes that are needed.
Generally speaking however, positive feedback fuels performance Being told you have done a good job generates the feeling you need to do more. To get that however, you have to ensure that you meet the standard making your output useful to others. Your objective as a peak performer however is to beat the standards and the exceed the expectation. Your own expectation and that of others. Something referred to as going the extra mile.
Expectations are driven by duty, responsibility and usefulness and when output is alienated from these, we get the feedback we don‘t want. However, we can process the feedback we don’t want into performing better so we can get the feedback we want and then use it to accelerate performance. For those who are in the right occupation this must happen without difficulty. It is the same with those who are with the right spouse. #spidup
Some questions you can use to check your levels. Email the answers to email@example.com to join our no-obligation, one month free performance coaching program.
How can your performance today be better than that of yesterday?
How would you rate your performance at work and home with regards to duty and standards?
Are there shortfalls and how in your opinion can things be improved?
Describe the quality of your output in relation to the expectations of your colleagues and superiors?
How does the feedback you get from them affect your performance and how can things be improved?