Performance Improvement & Professional Development

You Are Your Own Product

Here’s a lesson that is seemingly being forgotten today; we get paid based on the value we bring to the marketplace. Our value in the marketplace is based on the contributions we make – not based on effort. Trying is good, but delivering the goods is what really counts.

This is why personal development is so important. We get paid for the level of contribution we make to the marketplace or to the workplace. The good news is we can increase our ability to contribute through personal and professional development. Here are 5 Keys for Personal/Professional Development

Have a S.M.A.R.T Vision for what you want to accomplish

This is THE starting point for success and achievement. Without a clear vision for where you want to go or what you want to accomplish you’ll have no chance for achievement. The vision must be Specific – Measurable – Achievable – Relevant and Time-Bound. Anything less is nothing more than a wish or a dream. Specificity is key.

Set Short-Term – Achievable Goals

Your goals need to be directly related to your S.M.A.R.T. vision. And, they need to be achievable in a fairly short period of time. Why? Momentum. Goals that are pressing and proximate help you develop and maintain your focus and energy. My recommendation? A ninety-day deadline

Understand Your Strengths

Your energy and focus needs to be on doing what you do best. Everything else needs to be delegated or farmed out. I know that’s easier said than done but, focusing on your strengths will bring your vision to fruition and make goal achievement a whole lot easier – and much more fun.

Look for Success Opportunities

Instead of focusing on what isn’t working or what might not work, look for opportunities to advance your vision and achieve your goals. If you believe in what you want to achieve start looking for opportunities to make it happen. You’ll be rewarded for doing so.

Measure Your Progress

You have to keep score. Measuring your progress – even if that progress is minimal – is motivating. It’s important to recognize that you’re moving forward. Record and repeat what’s working – discard or delegate what’s not. Know what to change or what to stop doing.

Bottom Line

You can wait for the government to raise the minimum wage or wait for the company to give you a raise or…you can change your philosophy. The new philosophy is that you are the product. You are the person responsible for your success and achievement.

“When an archer misses the mark he looks for the fault within himself. Failure to hit the bull’s eye is never the fault of the target. If you want to improve your aim you have to improve yourself.” Gilbert Orland

About the Author

Les Taylor is the founder and managing partner of Outperformers International. He is an award-winning author, professional speaker and recognized expert in the field of performance improvement and professional development. Les is a former law enforcement executive, served as the executive director of the Arizona Association of Chiefs of Police, is a graduate of the FBI National Academy and is a past president of the Arizona Chapter of the National Speakers Association.

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