Optimism and Desire in Regard to Great Performance

Mitch Schneider
September 15, 2019

Let’s start with one of Schneider’s Laws: No one wakes up in the morning with the hope or intention of having a bad day!

It isn’t something any of us are likely to strive for…

In fact, most of us wake up with the intentionof having a great day! (We’ll look at intention later).

No one wakes up in the morning striving to be average. Nor, does anyone endeavor to achieve second place at anything of consequence: anything important to us. The only time coming in second or third makes any sense in our culture is when you’ve left everything you have out on the field. And, even then, it still leaves the majority of us unsatisfied and wanting more.

After all, you wouldn’t want to pick a surgeon who was satisfied with being average — Would you? How about a dentist? Ouch! Want an average accountant to do your taxes? Didn’t think so!

When I was still at the shop, I had to believe we were the best possible choice for automotive service, maintenance and repair. That meant a constant commitment to continuing education, investing in the best tools and equipment and a culture of excellence with no room for anything less the best every one of us was capable of.

My Hematologist/Oncologist at the City of Hope, Dr. David Snyder, is one of the foremost specialists in myeloid cancers in the world. Especially, cancers like mine. He deals with life and death every day.

He has to believe he is the best. Just as he has to believe he and his team will find a way to save every patient: solve every problem. Just as my team and I had to believe we could ultimately fix every vehicle. It may not be realistic. It might not even be reasonable. But it is absolutely necessary.

Because of that unwavering commitment and optimism to a singular purpose, Dr. Snyder and the folks at the City of Hope have one of the highest stem cell/bone marrow transplant success rates in the world.

Great performance isn’t just a matter of believing you are the best. Although, constantly striving to be the best certainly plays an important role. Achieving great performance requires more than just optimism. It requires both optimism and desire. And, while intention may play an important role in all of this — intention is just what gets you started. Intention without action isn’t much more than hope or a fuzzy dream.

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