Be Remarkable, not Mediocre

This is an old post from Seth Godin:

The false choice of mediocrity

Too often, we’re presented with choices that don’t please us. We can pick one lousy alternative or the other. And too often, we pick one.

I was struck by Apple’s choice to put a glass screen on the original iPhone. Just six weeks before it was announced, Steve Jobs decided he wanted a scratchproof glass screen. The thing is, this wasn’t an option. It wasn’t possible, reliable, feasible or appropriately priced. It couldn’t be done with certainty, and almost any other organization would have taken it off the list of appropriate choices.

It was unreasonable.

And that’s the key. Remarkable work is always not on the list, because if it was, it would be commonplace, not remarkable.

Posted by Seth Godin on July 09, 2012

It’s easy to be mediocre … just do what you’re told and you won’t be in trouble — but you won’t get noticed, either.  If you want to stand out, you have to go beyond what is expected.  You have to be willing to try for what is just out of your reach — or maybe even impossible.  Sometimes you reach too far and stumble … but even those setbacks leave you better off than if you’d never tried:  you’ve just learned what it will take to succeed next time.

Being remarkable takes effort. Being remarkable is risky.  Being remarkable can pay huge dividends.

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