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  • Adequacy is Unacceptable

    Robert Stevenson, Adequacy is Unacceptable

    Adequacy is Unacceptable

    I recently did a program for a company that has been in business for 64 years. In researching the company to prepare for my program, I was really impressed with their Value Statement. It had such power and clarity incorporated into one short sentence. Here is their statement:

    In the pursuit of excellence, adequacy is unacceptable.

    After reading all the materials they had sent me, I asked their CEO to tell me what he thought was “THE” most important point, principle, statement, rule, mantra, they followed to be successful. He said, “Rob, that’s simple … adequacy is unacceptable.” There was no hesitation or need for reflection given to his answer.  I asked, and in a wink of an eye, I had my answer. He understands what is necessary to survive and thrive in business today. He believes in his corporate Value Statement … and he lives it. It guides him in all his business decisions.

    The internet, Facebook and Twitter (to name a few) have changed the way companies must do business if they plan on surviving. People are going online and checking you out. They can go to “Angie’s List” and see what is being said about you. Potential customers can simply type in their Goggle bar … complaints about “your” company and in one click, your chance of doing business could be crushed if the comments are lousy, bad, awful … or in some cases … a terrible experience is described in such a detailed and colorfully descriptive manner, that you feel you just witnessed it yourself.

    People don’t go online and write comments about ADEQUATE companies. They like to write about either great experiences or bad ones. Smart companies understand this trend and are doing everything they can to have client comments include words like SUPERIOR, ASTONISHED, WOW, AWESOME, INCREDIBLE, AMAZING, SENSATIONAL, REMARKABLE, EXTRAORDINARY, or WONDERFUL. Heck, I had two heat pump units installed in my house last week and the installers did an incredible job. They were on time, polite, professional, respectful of our home and property, didn’t damage anything and cleaned up to make everything look just as it had before they arrived. Who gets fired up about heat pumps being installed? ME! They could have been late, rude, dirty, damaged my walls, trampled my shrubbery, not cleaned up all the debris and taken a lot longer than they said was necessary.

    If you plan on staying successful in business or want to advance your career then understand that adequacy is unacceptable. To me, the word ADEQUATE is just another way of saying AVERAGE … and average is something I have no need for.  I don’t want to hire average people or do business with average companies. The CONSEQUENCE of just being ADEQUATE is disappointment. You captivated no one, you did nothing exceptional, distinctive, excellent, unique, or outstanding and you certainly DID NOT differentiate yourself from your peers or competition. Think about what would IMPRESS those you are working for and go for it. A person/company who will do more than expected every time and do it with a smile on their face will find themselves in HIGH DEMAND.Do more, be more, give more and you will achieve more. There are no trophies, victories, or accolades given for adequate. 

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