What is Winning?

It’s a fair question.

Do you have a philosophy for winning? Can you articulate it?

Does your company have a clearly stated philosophy for winning? Can you recite it? Is it constant or does it change year after year? Does it motivate?

While winning can be different things for different people it should always be clear, compelling, and constant. If it is, then every decision you make and every thing you do will forward that winning agenda. Or not.

I find it interesting to observe just how many companies have neither a clear nor compelling philosophy for winning. The same is probably true for most people.

My former neighbor very definitely has a compelling philosophy for winning. He once proudly told me “He Who Died With The Most Stuff Won.” Another person said winning is “Never Having Regrets.”

What about your company? Does it have a stated philosophy for winning or does it refer to things like profitability, retained earnings or stock price?

Are those philosophies of winning or are they measures of progress? Remember, winning needs to be defined as what drives everything you do.

Look at these examples from two very different companies. Both are abundantly clear to their leaders, employees, customers, and partners. And both are compelling in their own ways.

One is from an enormously successful entrepreneur who defines winning in the following way: “Our Sole Purpose for Being in Any Business Is To Annihilate the Competition.”

The other is from Nike, which communicated its philosophy of winning to the world on an outdoor billboard in Atlanta during the 1996 Olympic Summer Games. Along with the Nike swoosh, the billboard stated: You Don’t Win Silver. You Lose Gold. Just do it, indeed.

Winning matters. But what matters more is defining what winning is. Only then will you know exactly what to do at all times.

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