Breakthrough the OK Plateau [Video]

Being competent is easy, but pushing through to achieve excellence is difficult. In this video Dr. Hoogeveen talks discusses the mindset you need to be great and why it has less to do with talent then you would think.


I was recently watching the Olympics and seeing phenomenal athletic feats, and it was interesting to hear some people talk about how naturally gifted those athletes are and they truly are physically gifted. But it’s more than that. I want to reference a book called, “Moonwalking with Einstein” by Joshua Foer.

What Joshua did is he examined the National Memory Tournament. Yes, there’s an actual national memory competition and people can do what appear to be superhuman feats of memory. What he did was to go examine how they went about acquiring those skills and when he talked about is what it takes to bust through the “OK plateau”.

What most of us do in life is we work to learn a skill until we become OK and then we plateau. What exceptional people do who become the best in their field, like those Olympians, like these memory champions, is they systematically continue to push themselves with deliberate practice often, which with a coach, until they truly excel. That’s why Phil Mickelson is Phil Mickelson. Why Pete Sampras is Pete Sampras. Why Yo-Yo Ma is Yo-Yo Ma. Because they busted through the OK plateau.

One of the things that I think is relevant to us in business is that is as rare as that is to find an individual who will have the umph, have the drive to bust through that OK plateau, I think it’s even more rare to find a company that is willing to put in the effort and the deliberate strategic planning to become exceptional. But the payoff when you get there is tremendous.

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