“No one ever made a difference by being like everyone else.” –P.T. Barnum
There is a subtle misconception that crops up when one reads books like The Innovator’s Field Guide. When faced with examples of the business community’s elite performers, there is a tendency to think their methods will spell success for you. We fall into the same reasoning when reading books that outline a specific step-by-step method to achieving your dreams. The authors of those types of books are successful and, by golly, it should work for me too. So, you change your management style or follow the steps only to find you’ve only succeeded in creating changes that haven’t netted the results you hoped for. How can this be? It worked for those individuals, but why are those tactics not working for you?
It could be that there is one critical component to following any example or methodology for success—you. Success comes from what new ideas and exemplars unlock within your unique set of skills and talents, not from being a carbon copy of someone else. Imagine if Jeff Bezos cloned Henry Ford’s early philosophy of, “A customer can have a car painted any color he wants as long as it’s black”? Amazon would offer a tenth of the items it currently does, and no one would think twice about Bezos’s business acumen.
There are authentic, innovative powers inside of you that should never be discounted or even remotely set aside. Are there behaviors and practices that will help you evolve into the success you want to be? Absolutely! There are lessons to be learned and systems to make your path easier. However, pathways to success are as unique as you are. Never forget that you have the power to adapt, evolve, and refine the ideas of others into your vision of success. That’s the power of you and don’t let anyone ever tell you otherwise.
The Power of You: Accelerators
- What key strengths or unique, innovative powers do you possess?
- In what ways do you utilize these powers in your everyday work?
- In what ways could you better leverage your uniqueness in pursuit of the key results you’re looking to achieve?
Dr. Jeff D. Standridge is the best-selling author of “The Innovator’s Field Guide” and “The Top Performer’s Field Guide.” He serves as Managing Director for the Conductor and Innovation Junkie, and teaches in the College of Business at the University of Central Arkansas. Jeff helps organizations and their leaders generate sustained results in the areas of innovation, strategy, profit growth, organizational effectiveness and leadership. Learn more at InnovationJunkie.com.