It’s OK to Not Tolerate Mediocrity


You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. – Jim Rohn

To succeed as entrepreneurs, we have to demand the same excellence of ourselves and the people we hire. If we hire mediocre people and spend our time with mediocre people, our businesses will be mediocre.

The more successful you become, the more criticism you’ll face. 

Demanding excellence and not settling for mediocrity will cause some people not to like you. They will call you mean and stubborn and other unflattering things. It’s why some of the greatest achievers ever were labeled “assholes” by those around them. Steve Jobs is a perfect example of this. He demanded absolute perfection from every member of his team and those who couldn’t cut it called him that way.

As a leader, you must be clear and consistent about performance expectations. You need to fight mediocrity before it becomes an epidemic in the workplace. Here are some development tips to remember.

· Make sure you are meeting your own performance expectations. When people see you working hard and meeting your expectations, they are more likely to use you as a role model.

· Use your organization’s appraisal system more effectively to enforce the clear and specific goals you have established, but not just annually. You may need to review progress on a monthly basis.

· Identify the critical path to your desired results and then remove the obstacles that get in the way.

· Involve employees in setting the team’s goals and objectives. Track results. Recognize and reward employees for their contribution to the success of your team.

· Make sure you communicate the appropriate sense of urgency. If everything is urgent, people can’t prioritize. If nothing is urgent, deadlines are often not achieved.