E x 5 Model of Excellence

I am now officially an empty nester again. After a whirlwind summer of moving, a bit of travel, helping my daughter navigate the “getting into nursing school” waters and trying to keep my eye on business, I am exhausted. And now, I’m under the weather. The bad news? I am not outside enjoying these cooler August days. The good news? I have plenty of time to focus on my business(es).

street post with leadership blvd and excellence way signs

I miss my daughter pretty intensely right now, since she was here with us all summer and I honestly enjoyed having her here. She helped quite a bit in my India Hicks business and I really enjoyed watching her increased social confidence in a room filled with businesswomen. Makes a Momma proud.   In our time together, especially when talking about “business stuff,” I often found myself going back to an old Keynote I used to deliver about the critical “E’s” of success. Now, as I look back on those “E’s” I find them to be parallel to my rules of thumb in parenting. Funny how, after all these years, I am using these “E’s” to be a leader in my Women in Business Program, a guide for my India Hicks SHE Tribe of women and a mentor to my interns.

So, as I sit here sipping on my hot tea, loaded up on Mucinex and cough meds, here is a thumbnail sketch of my E x 5 Model of Excellence regardless of what SHE-hat you are wearing today…

EDUCATE – yourself before you educate others. Anticipate the obstacles ahead of time to reduce fear, anxiety or roadblocks. Know your markets: who are your people? Those are your warmest leads. What are the “networking” opportunities to build new friendships?

EMPOWER – Find your balance between needing to control things and allowing others to grow in their successes and their failures. Using language like, “you are a major player” to our team/family or “here is what your team/family needs from you” are great ways to start the empowerment cycle.

ENCOURAGE – Empowerment doesn’t mean much if there is not encouragement along the way. Are you a “high touch” leader who inspires confidence. Do you offer the intrinsic value options along with the extrinsic? Happiness is just as important as a paycheck – they can have both. Offering resources and tools for success is a great encouragement tool as well!

Lead by EXAMPLE – Are you an optimistic leader? Even in the darkest of times, optimism is simply reality with inspirational-quote-pessimist-optimist-winston-churchillsolutions. Do you know how to have fun even when “on the clock?” Sick days are no fun…how about a “well day” to reboot yourself and your business?

Strive for EXCELLENCE – It is very important that we understand that “excellence” is NOT synonymous with “perfection.” Professional EXCELLENCE is not measured by a balance sheet alone but, rather, by relationships and customers you have for life. Personal EXCELLENCE is not measured by your bank account, the size of your house or the model of your car. Rather, it is the joy you find each day in the simple things and the people you choose to surround you.

I think the following quote about sums up my professional mantra and, if you insert “family” for “customer,” you just might see my personal mantra as well:

“If you work just for money, you’ll never make it, but if you love what you’re doing and you always put the customer first, success will be yours.”                                                            –Ray Kroc, McDonald’s


Note from the SHE Files: I am the sum of my “E’s”