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8 Steps To High Performance

You can only achieve high performance when you have a high performer’s mindset. That mindset is one of competitive edge and self-sacrifice and prioritizing performances at work above your other options

Photo Credit :

Focus on what you can change (Ignore the rest) - Marc Effron

‘Do not try to change yourself. You are unlikely to succeed. But work hard to improve the way you perform’ – Peter Drucker

The 8 Steps:
1. Set big goals
2. Behave to perform

3. Grow yourself faster

4. Connect

5. Maximize your fit

6. Fake it

7. Commit your body

8. Avoid distractions

Some people begin their career with some clear performance advantages. They might be smarter than you, from a better socioeconomic background, be attractive or have good personality characteristics.

These combined items predict up to 50 % of anyone’s individual performance. You can call them the fixed 50 %.

You control every other factor that drives your performance from your capabilities and behavior to the size of your network.

What’s the benefit of being a high performer? High performance will get you more of what you value, whether that’s flexibility, power, opportunity, pay, or recognition.

Science says that high-performance employees deliver anything between 100 % to 500 % more output than the average employee.

IQ is inherited about 50 % of the time and makes for a 25% impact of your performance. Blame your parents.

The average college students IQ is 115. Higher IQ matters if you have a complex job, however, a high IQ can make you less of an effective manager.

Another gift from your parents is personality, which like intelligence is about 50 % inherited. Women tend to get better ratings than men, but lower salary increases. Race bias occurs globally, is pervasive and not disappearing fast enough.

You can only achieve high performance when you have a high performer’s mindset. That mindset is one of competitive edge and self-sacrifice and prioritizing performance at work above your other options.

You will be evaluated not just for what you deliver but also relative to how others perform. That's going to be true throughout your life, and its best to recognize that.

When are you, your worst enemy?

1. When you externalize failure

2. We assign intent to other’s actions

3. We ignore information that can help us perform.

1. Set Big Goals

Bigger goals focused on the right things, allow you to demonstrate higher performance. The bigger goal also test your capabilities and build self-confidence in your ability to deliver great results in the future. since bigger goals are more challenging to achieve, you’re forced to build new skills and capabilities to achieve them.

Science about goals

1. Goals matter

2. Bigger goals increase what we deliver

3. Fewer goals means higher achievement ( this is against conventional company MBOs)

4. Coach toward the future

2. Behave to perform

Behaviors help you differentiate yourself as a high performer because they prove that you can do more than just get things done. High performers work hard to identify the most productive behaviors, learn new behaviors where needed and stop showing the less helpful ones.

The science of high-performance behaviors

1. Understand yourself

2. Choose the right behaviors

3. Adapt quickly

Your personality strongly influences your behaviors but does not control them.

There are some basic behaviors that you need to have, else you cannot be a high performer-ethical, honest, fair, not screaming at employees etc.

4 things Transformational leaders do well

• Connect

• Innovate

• Inspire

• Model

Study on behaviors of CEOS

What they show

• Fast

• Aggressive

• Persistent

• Efficient

• Proactive

• High standards

What they don't show

• Respect

• Open to criticism

• Listening

• Team work

Everyone around us sees us more accurately than we see ourselves. That is because we are wonderfully delusional about our own capabilities and behaviors and the less capable we are, the more delusional we are.

The 11 Hogan derailers

1. Excitable –seems to lack persistence

2. Skeptical-seems to lack trust

3. Cautious-resistant to change and reluctant to take chances

4. Reserved-seems to be a poor communicator

5. Leisurely-seems stubborn an uncooperative

6. Bold-seems unable to admit mistakes or learn from them

7. Mischievous-seems to have trouble maintaining commitments

8. Colorful-seems preoccupied with being noticed

9. Imaginative-seems creative but lacking in judgement

10. Diligent-tends to disempower staff

11. Dutiful-tends to be pleasant but does not support subordinates

3. Grow yourself faster

You compete everyday against every individual in your company or industry who

wants to be a high performer. If you grow more capabilities quickly, you ill earn more opportunities to perform better in the future.

The great news about growing is that you have a lot of control on how fast you grow and how much you grow. When you grow, you build crystallized intelligence – giving you more facts, insights, and observations that you can use for better results.

There are two types of experiences –

functional experiences X management experiences = faster growth

Differences between experiences, behaviors and skills

Drive car from home to work without an accidentObeyed all traffic rules and was polite to other driversCan operate a car, is able to read and understand road signs
Built and opened a new widget factory in a developing countryUnderstood and operated within a local culture push them to meet deadlinesManaged large-scale project, union relations, production scheduling
4. Connect

One research study showed that people struggle with the idea of networking as futile, threatening or morally questionable.

Connect with your manager
• Perform
• Help deliver what matters
• Offer genuine personal friendship

Connect with your peers
• Know them well
• Connect more with the best
• Say yes when they ask you for help
• Ask for help and advice

Connecting can be one of the most challenging elements of becoming a high
performer because you can't directly control its success, there are social conventions to follow, and some are naturally better at it.

5.Maximize your fit

Science suggests that leaders who deliver innovation and rapid change are those who personally connect with subordinates, communicate a clear direction and give broad autonomy to their team members.

People with a better fit in the organization deliver more, because they are more satisfied
with their jobs and more committed to the company. Two ways people fit with a company: fit with company strategy and fit with the amount of change company needs. Companies win by either being the most innovative or the most efficient.

6. Fake It
Actors immerse themselves in a role when they want to do a great job. That’s not their true personality but they transform.

As your career evolves, your continued performance will depend on how you show new behaviors. How fast you adapt to these new behaviors will determine how quickly you will be a high performer.

Sometimes you need to behave outside your comfort zone
1. You need to emerge as a leader
2. You need to be a more effective leader
3. You need to demonstrate power

7.Commit your body
What is the right amount of sleep?
Sleep quality matters more than sleep quantity. The national sleep foundation outs it at between 6 and 10 hours everyday.
Sleep loss hurts your basic functions, you will not blow your big presentation but wreck your car on the drive to office.
Less sleep makes you less alert, slows down reaction speed and there is less attention.
People tend to have hot beverages to counter sleep. The recommended amounts is between one to 8 cups of tea a day and one to four cups of coffee a day.
Only 5 % of people can fully function on less than six hours sleep.

8. Avoid Distractions
Don’t get waylaid by the newest jargon in town. Natural talent plus lots of practice gets your results.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house. Unless otherwise noted, the author is writing in his/her personal capacity. They are not intended and should not be thought to represent official ideas, attitudes, or policies of any agency or institution.

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D. Shivakumar

The author is Group Executive President – Corporate Strategy & Business Development, Aditya Birla Group

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