It was with great surprise and delight that we saw Tom Peters had quoted our Chief Creative, Hugh MacLeod in his new book, “Extreme Humanism”, so of course, we turned it into a semiotic!
So what is that point of the statement? We’ve lost count of how many companies use the word ‘excellence’ in their core values. The word, like so many ‘core values’ has turned into platitudinous mush- not valuable at all in terms of informing behavior.
The truth is that being excellent isn’t about working harder, meeting your KPIs, or improving processes. The idea behind excellence being a moral decision is about the truth that ‘how you do anything is how you do everything’. It begs the question: what are your standards? Do you have a mindset where you are hard-wired to improve situations? Are you striving for more, for better?
You see ‘excellence’ is a complex outcome (like all core values) of hundreds of inputs that when taken together create amazingness.
You cannot tell people to do it, you need to program the thinking that delivers it.
This is what Culture Design® is all about.
Programming the thinking that delivers highly-effective organizations.
If nothing else, the art and science of designing culture is really about deconstructing the thinking that you need your people to adopt and then embedding it into the organization in a systemic, repeatable way.
Back to Tom for a moment. His books, such as In Search of Excellence, have revolutionized how leaders look at management. In some ways, he’s very old school… in that his entire philosophy could be summed up by the great line of the ancient Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, “Character is destiny”.
In other words, the best way to be a better manager is to be a better human.
In the end, there are no secret magic tricks, there are only people.
There is nothing else
Here is a link to a post that Tom wrote for us earlier this year on his new book, “Excellence Now, Extreme Humanism”, and Tom generously shares his ideas on his website, where you can find a huge number of downloadable resources.
Until next time.