Are you a golfer? If so, you undoubtedly followed The Masters this weekend. Right? I’m not a big golf fan. Okay, I used to golf a bit and even belonged to a golf club several years ago. But haven’t golfed regularly in over 20 years as kids, church, life, and other interests got in the way. Yet even a casual sports fan often follows The Masters, especially on Sunday when the champion is crowned (or “jacketed”). Even if you don’t appreciate the golf, it’s hard not to admire the beauty of Augusta National. It’s like well-manicured, garden. A kaleidoscope of sorts.
Late this afternoon, my wife and I enjoyed a delicious hamburger and fries at a local hangout. Call it a late lunch or an early dinner, but we found ourselves in an intimate setting, eating burgers and watching The Masters with 30 strangers. Yes, it was fun! Soon after the champion tried on his green jacket, we paid our bill and left.
We strolled over to Starbucks Reserve (basically, a really cool and unique Starbucks that caters to coffee snobs like me!). We were buying a gift to send someone and wanted something they couldn’t easily find. The recipient of our gift is a fellow coffee drinker and we decided to get some coffee beans that are only available at a Starbucks Reserve. Exclusive coffee for a special person.
While there, I got a latte macchiato (a drink similar to my favorite all-time coffee drink – the quintessential espresso macchiato) and my wife, a non-coffee drinker (sacrilege I know!), got a hot tea. We talked with the specially-trained baristas, enjoyed our drinks, people-watched and talked about coffee and coffee-making equipment. You see while my wife is not a drinker of coffee, to her credit, she will talk with me about it. That’s one of many things that makes her a great wife!
And as I often do when I drinking coffee, eating good food, having a conversation or breathing, my brain started connecting “dots.” I thought about Patrick Reed, the new Masters champion. I thought about the hours and hours he has practiced. And I thought about the baristas at the Starbucks Reserve and the training required to master their craft. And I thought about the 3 things needed to be successful:
- Motivation. You need to be motivated (drive, ambition, fire-in-the-belly, focus, etc.).
- Opportunity. You need to have the opportunity. You can’t be on the bench. You need to be in the game, on the stage, in the kitchen, on the course, etc.
- Skills. You need to have skills The skills can come from a practice, natural ability or a combination of both. But you need skill. Experience often plays a key role in developing skills, but regardless of how you get them, you need skills to be successful.
This week’s article is really just a reminder about #3 – Skills. To be outstanding in your field, to be the best, to be successful, you need skills. What are you doing to get them? Are you committed to getting better every day? Are you practicing? Are you coachable? Open to feedback? Willing to persevere?
Whether your dream is to win The Masters, become a barista at a Starbucks Reserve, be the best dad/mom, sell the most products/services, win an Olympic gold medal, preach the best sermons, or perform new medical procedures, you need skills. You already knew that didn’t you?
Hope you have a great week. Be persistent. Get better every day. Focus. Improve your skills. Expand your knowledge. Be coachable. Seek feedback. Those who are truly great in their field (be it corporate, athletic, political, military, social, familial or religious), know the importance of Skills. Work at it. They do.
Dr. Robert Gerwig is an agent of change and is able to balance the needs of the business and the needs of people. Dr. Gerwig believes and practices the values of performance and delivery of business metrics while simultaneously developing and growing people into leaders. You can contact him at RobertGerwig[at]LeadStrategic.com.
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