What’s an Encore Effect?

Mark's longtime friend and fellow speaker and author, Jeff Blackman, recently interviewed Mark about The Encore Effect for his informative newsletter, The Results Report. We offer it here as Mark explains to Jeff what an encore effect is and how achieving it leads to remarkable performance...

The Encore Effect by Mark Sanborn

Jeff Blackman: What is the "Encore Effect?"

Mark Sanborn: We all know what an encore is: you go to a concert and are so moved by the performance...you and the rest of the audience start clapping, cheering, and yelling, "Bravo!"...refusing to let the artist or performer leave the stage. The audience implores the artist to perform one more number.

And when the artist relents and performs, calls for an encore begin again. Many times, the weary, but appreciative artist complies.

What if that artist was YOU? I don't mean you're a singer, musician or actor. But each of us performs on a "stage"...an office, a sales floor, or in a client's place of business. Whatever stage you "perform" on, can be just as worthy of an encore performance...where people shout for more of what you do.

JB: Tell us more about the role of the "stage."

MS: Our "stages" are the different places we have important roles: home, work and community. It doesn't mean we're actors pretending to be who we're not. It's about being authentic and remarkable in fulfilling our responsibilities.

I use the term "stages" to remind us we have important audiences, who depend on how we perform, and need us to perform at our best.

JB: What are the qualities of a great "performer" in life and business?

MS: Passion is the fuel that drives remarkable performance. It's difficult to be remarkable if you aren't passionate about what you do, how you do it, why you do it and/or for whom you do it.

But it requires more than just passion. It also takes commitment and persistence. Research indicates...it requires about ten years to become an expert in anything. Most people aren't willing to invest the time and effort to continually improve their performance.

And of course, any great performer needs a repeatable process to apply. You too should have an identifiable approach to making any performance remarkable. Like; preparation, practice, performance and polish.

JB: How does one achieve the status that..."their employer would do almost anything NOT to lose them"?

MS: By becoming indispensable. By making sure your performance is so valued and so unique, (nobody else could do it quite like you). Your employer would be devastated if you left. If anybody can do the job as well as you can, you're an ordinary performer and ultimately at risk.

JB: Define the distinctions between "practices" and "principles."

MS: A principle is something you know. A practice is something you do. Principles never change. They're timeless. Practices are how you apply a principle to a given situation.

Here's an example: relationships are crucial. That applies across time, culture and profession. Yet, how you build relationships requires different practices. Staying in touch via email and social-networking are relatively new practices that may be part of your mix for deepening a relationship. Neither of those practices was available twenty years ago.

Practices flow from principles. The key is to first get...the principles right!

JB: How does one make their "performances" bigger, bolder and better?

MS: Aim 2LU: two levels up! Everybody else says they're trying to reach the next level. If you're aiming for the next level, you're only keeping up, not getting ahead. Two levels up is a significant improvement in the quality and impact of your performance.

In a competitive marketplace, good is table stakes. To be truly successful requires a remarkable performance.

What I've learned, is were all examples. The only question is, "What kind?" You and I choose by our deliberate actions whether our performances will be memorable for the right reasons.

JB: Tell me more about remarkable performers and commitment...

MS: There are six levels:

Interested: Interested individuals are curious enough to focus their attention on an area of interest. Their behavior is the equivalent of flipping through magazines or listening to CNN Headline News while working out. It rarely leads to remarkable or exceptional performance.

    Informed: Those who consistently focus their attention, are those who learn. This level results in persistent, intentional study and is the foundation, but not the end, of remarkable performance. Informed individuals subscribe to magazines, buy books, take classes, attend seminars, and make it a point to talk to other informed individuals.

    Involved: Those who use what they learn and apply it diligently to their careers and lives are involved. They don't just talk a good talk, they're playing the game.

    Immersed: To become an expert or specialist in a chosen field requires study and application...to a greater degree than most are willing to undertake. Immersed individuals surround themselves with their craft and practice it. Continually. They look at the world through eyes focused by their passion for the subject. This is the gateway to remarkable performance. Such individuals rise above the pack and stand out in the crowd.

    Invested: Those recognized as leaders in their field...are invested individuals. They give consistently remarkable performances because they've invested more time, talent, experience, and resources to improve whatever it is they're working on.

    Innovative: True leaders in any field, go beyond the norm to break new ground. They become the example of what's possible. They're always changing the game in positive ways. Innovative individuals set new standards and exemplify remarkable performance.

JB: How does one handle "personal" pitfalls?

MS: A pitfall can kill a performance, unless you've either avoided it or learned what to do when it happens.

Two of the most common personal pitfalls are arrogance (thinking too highly of yourself) and complacency (thinking good enough is good enough).

The antidote to arrogance is humility. Rick Warren defines humility as not thinking less of yourself, but thinking of yourself less. It means not being self-absorbed. It means focusing on the needs of others rather than simply trying to meet your own needs. As the old saying goes, someone wrapped up in him- or herself makes a small package.

The antidote to complacency is commitment. It's a commitment to getting better, no matter how good you become.

Cavett Robert, (founder of the National Speakers Association), someone Jeff, you and I both knew, said, "School is never out for the professional."

The same is true of any remarkable performer. The better you become at what you do, the more you realize you have to learn. Remarkable performers are justifiably proud, but never content. They keep pushing to see how much better they can be.

*** Congratulations to Jeff Blackman for his recent induction into the CPAE Speaker's Hall of Fame, an honor accorded very few and only the very best professional speakers. For more on Jeff, visit www.JeffBlackman.com.

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