Being The Best – What Does It Take?

by Marcella McMahon


As I read an article from a Continental Airlines Magazine (The Technovangelist, by Kevin Markey) about Philips Components which is the worlds largest supplier of drives, subassemblies and components for TV and is number one in LCD screens and screens for handheld devices like the one I am typing on right now, I am struck by the large print question this company asks itself, “What do we have to do to become better?” Philips has actually created an entire internal learning organization, which keeps asking that question of itself as a company.

How many of us ask ourselves “What do I do to become better?” in our own lives, personal or professional. Look at your company, do they ask what it is that they can do better? Or if you are a manager, how often do you stop to reassess what it is you can do better? Or how you can help your staff to do better?

What does it take to be the best?

Being the best takes:
1. Self Assessment
2. Group Assessment
3. Utter Honesty
4. Ability to Handle Criticism Appropriately
5. Perpetual Search for Growth

These steps work for anyone in any aspect of life, be it personal, family, spiritual, physical, or business. Since this is a Sales Newsletter – let’s focus on business life.

Self Assessment

Take a look at where you are in your career. Good Questions to Ask Your Self:
Am I where I want to be?
Where do I need to grow?
The one thing I would change about my work is…


Now you have some areas you might change. Take for example, one of my clients who made this common statement, “I want to grow my earnings.”

You’ve heard the statement, “Think outside the box.” That’s what I want you to do next. Whatever your issue, don’t think along conventional lines.

So take increasing your earnings and think outside the normal and use brainstorming techniques, which means no criticizing ideas at this point.

Some ideas on increasing earnings for a commissionable position may include:

Self-Marketing and Networking – How can I increase my customer base? In turn will increase my revenue.

Treating my job as self-employment – Since sales is commission based the more sales I make the more earnings I acquire. Maybe I could hire an assistant to help me accomplish more in a day. Maybe I could develop an email marketing campaign and drive sales directly to me. Or maybe I could

Group Assessment

Assess your group means: analyze whom you group yourself with:

Which company do you choose to work for?
What type of sales team you have?
Who you hang around?

Those directly around us affect our beliefs about ourselves and motivate us to greatness or hold us back. Do your surrounding entities have the qualities you strive for? If not, why are you choosing this group or organization?

Making your company better and your group better will only make you better in the long run.

The truth is when your parents said, “You are who you hang around” they were giving you excellent advice.

It takes a strong self-esteem to handle self-honesty as well as honesty from others.

I recommend asking trusted allies to assess your strengths and weaknesses. If you have trouble taking in advice, I highly recommend reading some self-help books on self-esteem. My personal favorite is Pia Mellody’s (the title is quite deceiving).

It takes vulnerability to be open to learn and grow. And as crazy as it may sound, vulnerability actually takes strength of character.

Ability to Handle Criticism

Take it in stride. Criticism can be a tool of growth. “How?” you ask. By using the FLACK method.
1. Forget who the criticizing is coming from
2. Listen to what is being said
3. Assess what is true and what is not (Sometimes it is more about the person doing the criticizing, but see if you find any truth about the criticism in your heart)
4. Change the negative behavior
5. Know that you will have to fight the old negative behavior for a long time before the new behavior is easy habit

Fight Criticism with FLACK!

Perpetual Search for Growth

A perpetual search for growth is absolutely necessary to BEING THE BEST. When searching ask yourself, “What do I need to do to make myself better?” “What do I need to do to make my company better?” “What do I need to do to make the world better?”

Use a journal to track your growth. Write in it at least once per week. Write about where you want to go – plot your course and you’ll get there. Then review your journal monthly to see how far you’ve come. I make this guarantee you will be surprised!

Keep searching and growing.

“If you don’t keep moving forward,
the world will.
Stand still for a moment
and the world will continue to pass you by.
For to truly move ahead of the pack,
your pace must be twice as fast.”


© 2001 by Positive Results. All rights reserved. Reprinted with permission.

Marcella McMahon is a professional speaker, entrepreneur, business consultant, motivational coach, counselor and COO of Positive Results. She coaches many entrepreneurs to success and loves instructing. She gives her time freely to the non-profit organization “Junior Achievement” teaching the youth of America to be entrepreneurial and understand business’ role in free enterprise.

You can reach Marcella at:
Positive Results
32818 Walker Road, Suite 103
Avon Lake, OH 44012
Phone: 1 (800) 926-5953
Fax: 1 (208) 723-5295
E-mail: [email protected]