Good is the enemy of great!
“And that is one of the key reasons why we have so little that becomes great.
We don’t have great schools, principally because we have good schools. We don’t have great government, principally because we have good government.
Few people attain great lives, in large part because it is just so easy to settle for a good life. The vast majority of companies never become great, precisely because the vast majority become quite good—and that is the problem.”
“Good is the enemy of great is not just a business problem. It is a human problem.”
Known to be “the student of enduring great companies”, Jim Collin’s extreme dedication and research team, have brought a wealth of knowledge and research to the world that can be learned from.
Jim Collins is recognized as leader, researcher and a teacher. He is a former faculty member at Stanford University Graduate School of Business, where he received the Distinguished Teaching Award.
When asked what motivates him to undertake huge research projects, his answer is simple—curiosity.
It was the question—“Can a good company become a great company, and, if so, how?” that inspired Jim Collins to assemble a team of researchers to take on the task and tackle one of the biggest questions business has to offer. “Is the disease of just being good incurable?”
One great question became the source of inspiration for a profound research project that has brought astounding information!
Over a fifteen-year period, the research team gathered extensive research that met “rigorous standards”, to determine what made companies great. The results were surprising, and they were quite contrary to conventional wisdom.
Business Week comments that, “Collins has written a book that seems built to last.”
The principles that Jim Collins and his research team uncovered, about the fundamental differences between great and good, between excellent and mediocre, is timeless and applicable in every aspect of life.
Have I sparked your interest? I hope so!
We are so blessed to live in an age where information is made widely available and that it is so easily accessible. Having a book like this, to help us achieve success, truly is a gift. We can learn to be extraordinary!
Why have ordinary when you can have extraordinary?
A lot of people give up on “extraordinary” because it absolutely requires deep commitment, constant learning, focus, and a plan of action. They “makeup” the story, that this is too hard.
The reality is—the opposite is true. When you focus like a laser beam on what is important and what aligns with your core values, nothing is more fulfilling.
You must be your best!
“If you cannot be the best in the world at your core business,” Collins writes, “then your core business absolutely cannot form the basis of a great company”.
BE your best—and have greatness!
There are a few key principles that stood out as I read the book. The author speaks about a “transformation” process that happened to great companies.
- One of them was that companies had to ignite the spark by first getting the “right people on the bus”, and then figuring out where to drive it. Collins calls this—“First who and then what!”
- They also had to “confront the brutal facts (yet never loose faith)”.
- And they had to also practice a “Culture of Discipline”, which evidence indicates, leads to “breakthrough”. What is this “culture”? It is—disciplined people, discipline thought and disciplined action.
Now this has got me thinking!
I have a personal story I related to when I read the first chapter. Several weeks ago, I went for lunch with a dear friend to “catch up”. As we shared openly about our lives, I felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude when I talked about my business and the success I was achieving.
I know that I had to learn how to “confront the brutal facts” and realize that this is necessary to run a successful business. I also recognize that hard work, discipline and sacrifice does pay off, when your work has been invested wisely. Payday does come— and when the day comes and you get a return on your investment—and when you achieve sustained growth—it is a grand time to celebrate! (If you are an entrepreneur, I know you know exactly what I am talking about!)
Acting not one bit surprised by what I was saying, I had to chuckle when my friend blurted out, “Of course you are successful!. Your commitment and dedication to your work has been impeccable. You have worked extremely hard from the “get go”! That’s why you are successful. YOU made this happen!”
I knew she was right. As her words resonated, I smiled and felt a sense of pride and gratitude for my accomplishments. Something so obvious, I needed to remember and celebrate!
How does this relate to the book “Good to Great”?
It is important to remember that:
Breakthrough happens when there are “Disciplined people, disciplined thought and disciplined action”.
I have spoken to many people who believe that discipline is “taboo” and that it is too restricting. Discipline is an incredible strength!
Ask the university student that successfully graduates after years of having to apply themselves—or the couple that fights for intimacy and never gives up —let’s not forget that employee, who worked their butt off to excel, and one day is promoted. Parents have great kids and stay in relationship with them because they choose to spend time together and choose wholeness. Leadership is discipline and discipline is powerful!
A GREAT life requires belief, excellence, a deep commitment and the utmost discipline. Discipline is one of the most positive words you can act on.
It is discipline that brings results!
When you say a firm “YES” to what works in our life, and to what brings abundance —-this is “greatness” in action.
When you say a firm “NO”—to settling, and just being “good” enough—to compromise —and to distractions, you are able to focus on what really matters!
Settling for “good” or mediocre when excellence and greatness is achievable just does not make sense! Discipline paves the way.
- What are the “disciplines” that you must practice to claim your freedom?
- What must you commit to so you can have the extraordinary results you want?
- What is one small step that you will commit to, to make this happen?
Make your success a priority!
Commit to positive thoughts that work for you and surround yourself with people that inspire and challenge you.
Take action and move forward!
When you start, KNOW that there is no turning back—like the general who set out to sea, burning the boats when he landed, leaving only one option—succeed or die!
Know that with “belief”—you have the “will” to do it— and “wisdom” will help you find it!
Commit to your personal path of success!