Success always follows excellence. 

Chick-fil-a is quite a different fast food establishment. They are incredibly profitable, they have ridiculously long, but fast, lines at lunch and the company can’t open them fast enough. They are also closed on Sunday forgoing even more profits in order for their people to rest and go to church. 

What makes CFA so successful is that they chase excellence in everything that they do. They are more concerned about delivering a high quality, consistent experience than partnering up with the latest movie or kids show out there. CFA’s changes to their menu are very intentional and they do little limited-time fad items that so many other chains rely on for traffic. 

Chick-fil-a is so successful because they ignore the competition and focus on their own level of excellence. 

Success is measured against others. 

Success is very often tied to a measurement against something or someone else. You can see it in all stages of your life. 

  • What was your academic rank in high school?
  • How did you or your team place in a sporting event or tournament?
  • How many other candidates did you beat to get the job?
  • How did you do compared to last year’s numbers?
  • Where are you on the average salary scale?
  • How much is your house compared to the average listing in the city?

These are just a few of the ways that we measure success in our lives and in our leadership. The items listed above aren’t bad things. The problem with aiming for success is two-fold. First, while success can create more success it also creates a cycle where you are never truly satisfied. Secondly, success might not be your best. 

Excellence is measured against yourself. 

Shooting for excellence requires a bit more discipline. You can’t become distracted by what others are doing or what success they are having. You and your team have to focus on being the best that you can be. Excellence is about bringing out maximum potential and consistency in what you do. If a runner eats well, trains hard and represents him or herself well before and after the race are they a failure if they come in fourth? That person will walk away with a sense of accomplishment because they gave it their all. A person just looking for success walks away with disappointment. 

What you and your team do should be measured up against your potential, not what others have done or even what you’ve done in the past. Once you shoot for excellence, your goals begin to fall in to place and you have a greater level of satisfaction. 

Success is not bad. I want you to be successful in life. Chose the right mindset as you work towards your goals. Excellence will always set you apart in how you represent yourself, your company and your customers will notice. 

Make a better tomorrow. 
-ZH

**Today we celebrate our 150th episode of Passing the Baton Leadership Podcast. Thank you all who have supported us for over three years. If you don’t get the podcast, you can download it for free at all major podcast outlets or listen to it on your CPU by clicking one of the links below. In a way, it feels like we are just getting started and have several new things in the works for the future.