Whether you want to win that new account or inspire your family and friends, bestselling author and acclaimed speaker Mark Sanborn shows us how to make every performance count.
Every day, we are called to perform-- at work, at home, in our communities. But is it possible to make every performance outstanding, the kind that leaves people applauding for an encore?
Mark Sanborn, leadership expert and bestselling author of The Fred Factor, says that anyone can achieve remarkable performance time after time--no matter what their personality, strengths, or weaknesses. In The Encore Effect Sanborn demonstrates, through his own experiences as well as those of the people he's worked with in his career, how you can cultivate the traits shared by remarkable performers and achieve extraordinary results in all aspects of your life. The secrets lie in five steps:
Passion: The fuel for remarkable performance
Prepare: How remarkable performance begins
Practice: It won't make you perfect, but it will make you better
Perform: How to engage your audience
Polish: Making your performance shine
Whether your "stage" is an office, a sales floor, the boardroom, or your own home, Sanborn's sound advice and rousing encouragement will help you shine in every situation where it matters most.
How to be tops in work and life; from the author of the best-selling The Fred Factor. Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
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September 01, 2008
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Excerpt from The Encore Effect by Mark Sanborn
THE POWER OF
All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players.
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages.
--William Shakespeare, As You Like It, act II, scene 7
In Shakespeare's comedy As You Like It, Jaques seems to think we move through life controlled by a preordained script, with little or no control, making our "exits" and "entrances" by divine cue. I couldn't disagree with him more. While I wholly subscribe to the idea of the divine in our lives, I recognize that my life is a performance that I'm in charge of.
We all have roles to play. Our performance at work, and in every other aspect of our life, is a public display of our very best self. And if we're true to ourselves, we never have to remember what part we played with whom. We don't have to check our notes to see what the people are expecting from our callback performance.
To make your performance better, according to the legendary founder of Southwest Airlines, Herb Kelleher, you "change your practices, not your principles." In other words, you don't have to change who you are. Different people can be successful in very different ways.
"My best lesson in leadership came during my early days as a trial lawyer," says Kelleher. "Wanting to learn from the best, I went to see two of the most renowned litigators in San Antonio try cases. One sat there and never objected to anything, was very gentle with witnesses, and established a rapport with the jury. The other was an aggressive, thundering hell-raiser. And both seemed to win every case. That's when I realized there are many different paths, not one right path. That's true of leadership as well. People with different personalities, different approaches, or different values succeed not because one set of values or practices is superior, but because their values and practices are genuine. And when you and your organization are true to yourselves--when you deliver results and a singular experience--customers can spot it from thirty thousand feet."
We all perform various roles in our lives on the stage of life. But those roles should be different expressions of our best self.
Our performances matter. They can have a powerful impact on those around us. As parents, our performance shapes and influences our children. As employees and managers, our performance can make our company better, move a project forward, spark ideas among colleagues, and influence customers.
When I was sixteen, I learned that Og Mandino was scheduled to speak in Akron, Ohio, about a ninety-minute drive from my home. Og is one of the best-selling self-help authors of all time, and I had already devoured several of his books, including The Greatest Salesman in the World and The Greatest Miracle in the World. Rookie driver or not, I was determined to go hear him speak.
In the course of the speech, Og talked about his troubled past; at one point he seriously considered ending his life. He spoke about the influences that had lifted him out of despair and set him on the road to remarkable achievement.
His delivery was low-key, but his message was powerful and sincere, and it inspired me. I came away determined to work harder and better in my own life. Others seemed to feel the same way--at the end of his talk the audience gave Og a standing ovation. I was witnessing the Encore Effect in action.
The ideas and passion with which Og Mandino spoke planted the seeds of change in me. The performance made me act.
And that is the potential impact of a remarkable performance. It can change the lives of those around you. That is the kind of experience we all want to have. And that's why creating a remarkable performance is so key to personal success.
Since that day spent listening to Og Mandino, I have observed performances of every kind throughout the United States and abroad. From Broadway to corporate boardrooms, I've learned that every remarkable performance affects us. They:
Move us to act.
Make us feel good.
Cause us to laugh.
Stimulate us to think.
Only the most incredible performances accomplish all four, but over time I've learned that every remarkable performance achieves at least one of these four impacts.
I've seen plenty of performances that have disappointed me, and I'm sure you have too--in corporate offices, restaurants, department stores, and churches, at car rental agencies, at ticket counters and security lines at airports, and in every other conceivable venue or location.
And, yes, I've been guilty of disappointing performance. In college I ran for a major office in an organization to which I belonged. I was defeated. In the aftermath I was asked to chair an important committee. I had no passion for the work of the committee, but I didn't want to look like a sore loser so I accepted the role.