Normalise a culture of excellence: Part 1 Mercedes Benz thrives on a combination of artistry and engineering to create vehicles that are mouth-watering from the tip to the tail end.

Arthur Marara-Point Blank

Isaac Disraeli, once said, and rightly so, “It is a wretched taste to be gratified with mediocrity when the excellent lies before us.”

The way you present yourself as a company or as an individual can either create or destroy opportunities. 

You can do a lot of work in marketing yourself and your brand, but if you do not augment whatever you claim to stand for with excellence, you will find yourself at the drawing board again.

Excellence is the ability to surpass the norm or ordinary standards. 

There is an ordinary way of doing things, but when you harness the standard of excellence, you do things in an extra-ordinary way. 

Do not just desire to succeed, desire to excel in whatever you will be doing. Excellence is an attribute that will distinguish you from the rest. 

In fact, it distinguishes leaders from followers. You need to desire to raise your standards as an individual or as an organisation.

The standards that you operate with determine the type of clients you attract, and the type of money you make as well. 

No one is attracted to companies that appear to have a patent for mediocrity, nor is there any employer who wants to be associated with employees who are just concerned about rendering service without paying heed to the manner in which the service is being rendered. 

Clients always deserve the best when you are dealing with them.

Break the cycle of mediocrity in your life and replace it with a standard of excellence. The starting point in creating excellent organisations is in producing excellent individuals.

Excellence is a decision

We are a product of the decisions that we make. The same applies to excellence.

There is no one who woke up being excellent. 

They made a decision to be excellent. You can choose to live a life of excellence or a life of mediocrity. Discipline yourself to surpass mediocrity and do things differently. It has often been said that you can take a donkey to the river but you cannot force it to drink water. 

You can get all the motivation and literature on excellence, but if you do not make a decision to practice excellence, you will always be in the same position.

Desire and have the drive to improve yourself. 

Always look for opportunities to develop yourself, your service delivery, your deportment and so on. If you do not choose a life of excellence, no one will do that for you.

“The quality of a person’s life is in direct proportion to their commitment to excellence, regardless of their chosen field of endeavour.” [Vince Lombardi]

Excellence opens doors for you

Excellence separates you from the rest of the people in the world. Excellence builds a brand for you. The goal of branding is differentiation and standing out.

The world has opportunities tied to no one’s name but to those who can operate excellently. You do not need to know anyone in top offices, but they need to know you through excellence. 

It is a lifestyle; it is a way of doing things. 

Excellence is what took a shepherd boy in ancient Israel from the wilderness to the palace to be the king’s musician even though he knew no one in the high places. 

He lived his life with excellence. 

That is why the great Greek Philosopher Aristotle is often quoted for saying, “We are what we repeatedly do, excellence then is not an act, but a habit.” 

Once excellence is a habit, it becomes your default setting. 

You do not have to think or plan to do things excellently, you just do them excellently. Make excellence your default setting.

“The Best or Nothing”

The phrase sounds familiar right? That is Mercedes signature. For Mercedes the star emblem is more than just a badge but their commitment to give you, “the best or nothing.” 

They would rather do nothing than do anything that is below excellent. 

The Mercedes brand has remained one of the dominant brands wowing customers with amazing experience. But how have they managed to sustain their commitment to the best or nothing;

Innovation: Mercedes-Benz has remained one of the innovative companies which has continuously explored and developed newer ideas to enable their clients, to experience the potential of the road ahead.

Performance: Anyone who owns a Mercedes brand will attest to the fact that the brand regardless of model has high performance. The more advanced models also provide better performance. When you are driving a Mercedes it is no longer just a question of moving from point A to pointB, but also the experience of moving from point A-B.

Design: The company thrives on a combination of artistry and engineering to create vehicles that are mouth-watering from the tip to the tail end.

Safety: Mercedes continuously develops technology that enhances the safety of its clients by helping to protect and prevent them from collisions.

Environment: The company is moving to electric cars, in a bid to reduce the negative effects the automotive industry has had on the environment over the years.

Eliminate negligence

The enemy of excellence is negligence. Negligence is in two ways, the first one – a person knows what has to be done but chooses to do the thing in the wrong way, and second one – a person does not know what is supposed to be done but still proceeds to perform the task.

Be clear on the task if you want to be a person of excellence. It is always better to ask than to maintain silence and do the wrong thing.

Your work should reflect that you have indeed applied your mind to the task and have executed it to the best of your ability. Speed is a very important component in business but the workmanship exhibited in completing the task is equally important.

Take time to assess your own work and ask yourself if it reflects the best in you. Like John Deer make a commitment that, “I will never put my name on a product that does not have the best that is in me.” Harness the input of your colleagues so that they can give you honest feedback about your work and seek ways to improve.

Negligence is one of the fastest ways that enables you to lose credibility and damage your personal brand. The first thing people question after seeing your work is competence; “does this person know what they are doing?” 

The sad part is that negative publicity moves faster than positive publicity.

To be continued next week…

Arthur Marara is a corporate law attorney, keynote speaker, corporate and personal branding speaker commanding the stage with his delightful humour, raw energy, and wealth of life experiences. He is a financial wellness expert and is passionate about addressing the issues of wellness, strategy and personal and professional development. 

Arthur is the author of “Toys for Adults” a thought provoking book on entrepreneurship, and “No one is Coming” a book that seeks to equip leaders to take charge. 

Feedback: [email protected] or Visit his website or contact him on +263780055152.

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