“What are the three keys to success in your field?” This is a question Dan John, strength and conditioning icon and author of Never Let Go: A Philosophy of Lifting, Living, and Learning, says he asks every professional he meets. The idea is that success in any field likely boils down into just a few things.
For example, a fighter pilot he asked quickly answered, “Speed kills; hit and run; straight lines, short hooks.” I’m not a pilot so I don’t fully understand what he meant, but what’s important is that he knew and had an immediate answer. Likewise, a well-known basketball coach responded the three things for winning basketball games are offensive rebounds; transition defense; and free throws when tired. If you were that coach what would you make sure you communicated to all your players? What would you insist they worked on regularly?
More to the point, what are the three keys to success in your job? What have you done to improve yourself in those areas? If you are a manager, what are the three keys in each of your employees’ jobs? Have you told them? What have you done to help them improve in those areas?
Olympic Gold Medalist Dan Gable put it in a slightly different way when he said, “If it is important, do it every day. If it isn’t, don’t do it at all.” (Think hard about that and you’ll never need to attend a time or priority management seminar again.) When you think about the most important things in your job, do you do them everyday? When you think of all of the things you do everyday, how many of them are important to your success?