“The best” describes a culture of individuals who conform to rules and expectations more closely than others.
They spell more accurately; answer history questions more correctly and score the highest mark on linear algebra exams.
“The best” do a masterful job of performing their task to comply with the norms expected.
They “colour inside the lines” perfectly.
There are certain cultures where we want people with the highest marks. It would not be comforting, for example, knowing the pilot scored a blistering 25% on his aircraft landing test. Nor would we trust our life to a heart surgeon who had a bypass surgery success rate of 4 out of 10.
These types of professions we want the best and need “in the box” thinking and performance.
In an organization, however, conformance to a set of rules or operating best practices does not guarantee success. Being extremely competent at implementing a CRM “best practice” does not deliver a strategic advantage when all other organizations are endeavouring to implement the same capability.
When organizations conform to a best practice or a standard way of doing things, they all look alike; have the same mediocre culture, and to the market, they are invisible.
They all are members of the common herd who struggle to be seen and gain competitive advantage.
Roy Osing is a former President and CMO with over 33 years of leadership experience covering all the major business functions including business strategy, marketing, sales, customer service and people development. He is a blogger, content marketer, educator, coach, adviser and the author of the book series Be Different or Be Dead.
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