How to be “Pre-eminent”

Glen Jackson of the marketing communications firm Jackson-Spalding has written and spoken about what it means to be a preeminent organization.  He describes preeminence as “extraordinary excellence that, once reached and sustained, creates a competitive advantage.”  In his work with some of the largest companies in the world, he has observed seven distinct pillars that preeminent organizations sustain over time:

  1. Trust – “Trust is the most important five-letter word in all of business.  It is a function of character and competency.  You need both to establish trust.”
  2. Relationship Building – “This is the complete opposite of networking.  Relationship building is about investing in people.  Networking is about meeting people.  Networking is a task while relationship building is a commitment.  Networking can be superficial, while relationship building is always about professional and personal sincerity.”
  3. Marketing Communications – “Preeminent companies see their brand as a promise kept.  They relentlessly keep the promise and polish their brand, knowing that for brands, you either polish or tarnish them.”
  4. Assessment – “Preeminent organizations are always assessing and intentionally maintaining their commitment to sustaining their extraordinary excellence.”
  5. Servant Leadership – “Leaders who are true servants have a mindset that no task is too small or too big for them.”
  6. Fanatical Focus – “Preeminent companies do not hesitate to say no to opportunities that just don’t make good sense.  And they are not distracted by their success.  The focus and aim for excellence never waver.  Nothing is taken for granted, as they remain humble and hungry, gracious and ambitious.  These organizations strive, stretch, strain, and, in persistent fashion, succeed.”
  7. Remarkable Resiliency – “Toughness.  Resolve.  Persistence.  Endurance.  Preeminent companies have all these traits and then some.  They are able to withstand the peaks and valleys of the marketplace and endure the challenging headwinds around them, eventually turning these strong winds of adversity into helpful tailwinds.”

While these seven pillars are directed to companies and organizations, I believe that they can also be applied to one’s personal life.  If you were to adopt these actions/habits/traits, you would position yourself as someone who stands out in the workplace and as someone who makes a positive impact on the people around you.

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