Excellence is the possession of good quality in an unusual degree. As God’s ambassadors, we must represent him accurately. Excellence is doing things right. But before we consider how to do it right, lets ensure we are doing the right thing. Excellence in the wrong thing still spells failure.
DEFINE YOUR ASSIGNMENT
You cannot just be efficient for efficiency’s sake. We must also be effective. Efficiency is doing things right. Effectiveness is doing the right things. Defining your assignment is the starting point for you to achieve excellence. State clearly your vision in life or the vision of your organization. This defines the limit of the areas in which to achieve excellence as a person or organization.
DEAL WITH OLD MINDSET
Some people say that you have to choose between quality and quantity. This is not true because the more quality you have, the more quantity you attract. The more you do things better, the more you will be patronized.
There is another myth that says you must have large amounts of money before you can achieve excellence. The truth is, you need excellence to attract a large amount of money. If you will improve on the quality of what you are doing, your customers will increase; this translates into more money for you. Do not ask, “What will this cost us?” Rather ask, “What will it cost us if we do not do it?”
WHY EXCELLENCE IS A MUST
Things are changing around us every day. A person or organization that is outdated cannot be relevant to a contemporary world. If you are still making use of your old manual typewriter when you are supposed to be doing your work with great speed on a computer, it may mar a lot of things. We must endeavor to up-date ourselves with new technologies.
Excellence motivates, especially in an underdeveloped environment like ours. We should inspire the people around us by our actions. Our organizations should be places of inspiration. What is that unique thing you have or your organization has that can inspire other people?
Striving for excellence shows people that we are serious about our assignment i.e. what we are doing and encourages them to want to be part of it. No matter how small a thing looks, if you have invested quality thoughts in it, people tend to appreciate and identify with it. Great works are a result of deep thoughts.
Like begets like. Excellence attracts good quality; human, financial and material resources. For example if you work in a bank and that bank is known for excellent customer service, i.e. within five minutes a customer has been attended to; people tend to flock to such banks. The same goes for supermarkets, salons, and various companies.
Life is progressive and not stagnant. If we remain stagnant, we risk failure. There is no pride in failure. We must appreciate excellence wherever it is found. Excellence attracts. We must strive for it. This is one of the keys to success in life.
If you run an organization, then make it an excellence-oriented organization. Look for ways to continually improve the quality of services offered and your facilities.
AREAS OF IMPROVEMENT
Communication – i.e. your advert materials must portray excellence.
Customer service – When a service is good, one person tells a maximum of 5 people. But when the services are bad, one person tells 20 people. Only about 4% come back to complain but the remaining 96% speak with their feet.
Creativity- Your staff must keep churning out ideas about how to do things in a better way.
Staff trainings – Staff should be exposed to world class improvement programmes for better performance. It is vital to keep learning.
Facilities- The organization’s facilities reveal what we value and reflect our self-image. Therefore, the excellence-oriented organization must thrive for excellence in the following areas:
The painting of the facilities and landscaping of the environment – Keep the plants and a good cooling system.
The environment should be well lit, have comfortable seating arrangements and the temperature should be well managed with a cooling system.
The rest rooms should be clean – Visitors may forget what you said but not the memory of a foul-smelling restroom.
The appearance of staff says a lot about your organization’s priority for excellence.
The excellence-oriented organization invests money in what people can see. Human beings are generally motivated and affected by what they see.
Excellence is more of a process than a product; a journey, not a destination. We should not make excellence a one- time goal. The key is never to stop learning. When you stop learning, you stop growing. Upgrade from time to time.
You will Succeed!