While growing up, many of us aim for personal & professional excellance. Personal experience is producing or doing your best in any given situation with or without a conductive environment to do so: strive to be better than last time, every time. The features of personal excellance are:integrity, learing from mistakes,speaking with good purpose,live in the present, commitment, owneship, flexibility & balance. While thousands of medical professionals start their career with the dream of professional excellence, the numbers, unfortunately, thin out at the top, because they get distracted from their goals. This is reflected in the success and failure of several professionals in every field especially in the medical field.
Beginning a journey towards achieving personal excellence requires courage, while continuing that journey is even more difficult. The basic difference between a winner and a loser can be easily determined by how bold & courageous an individual is in decisions making. whereas the people that are stuck in between what to do and what not to do, high performers immediately take actions towards their goals.
Professionals living with a mediocre mindset are always find shortcuts, while avoiding the amount of dedication and hard work it requires to complete the task. They never really think about taking a leap of faith & are afraid of their prey and limit themselves in all aspects of their life. The excellent professionals exhibit an intrinsic knowledge of the difference between right and wrong, show the courage to act upon that knowledge, and embody the following ethical characteristics: respect for self, others, and the environment, empathy, integrity.
Often times, people live with a misconception that a successful life is just a matter of luck or an accident. They wait for the miracles to happen in their life. They do not plan or strive for professional excellance. In reality, success is predictable and you can learn a particular set of skills & increase your success rate. All you need to do is to figure out how other successful professionals are planning their success and how you can imitate them to get the same results.
To achieve that, we need dedicated training with a great mentor that can provide experience and build a strong foundation that no technology or gadget can provide, There is a great saying ‘If you want to be a cutting-edge surgeon, stay with the times. But your patient may suffer often. But if you want to be a safe surgeon, be five years behind the times’.
In the beginning, we have many wants in life especially like name, fame, wealth, recognition, health & family needs. When we, as professionals think of achieving these goals, we generally look upon at role models, heroes & dream figures. They are all different in personalities, profession, outlook, character and ambitions but they all have one thing in common i.e. hard, hard work.
If we look again at successful professionals around the globe, they all have common in their habits: they set goals, take responsibility for life, have great self displine, obsessed with self development, manage their time well, take risks, keep going when suffer setbacks, find a way to win, do what they love & read a lot. Successful professionals are not gifted; they just work hard then succeed on purpose.
As we progress in the career, one has to understand that no success transpires overnight. ‘Impatience for success’ is a tricky bad thing that can cause wise people to do many foolish things. Mr. Narayanamurthy of Infosys, on being asked how they became an overnight success, replied: ‘By working hard for 25 years’. Impatience can draw a professional like surgeon/physician towards unwanted procedures. Oprah Winfrey, on being asked the same question, replied: I would never see day light, I would come into work at 5.30 am in the morning when it was dark and leave at 8 pm when it was dark. There was no success without hard work, the only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary. Hard work beats talent when talent doesn’t work hard.
Professionals should develop the habit of ‘keeping the main thing in life as the main thing’. Losing focus and getting distracted by other businesses and ventures can derail a physician or surgeon from professional excellence. Money should be the by product of professional achievements and not the main quest. High achievers do not play the blame game and remain a part of those few personalities who set results as their topmost priority. Jim Rohn, an American entrepreneur, author and motivational speaker once told: “You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.” practicing such behaviour over and over again automatically trains your body & mind to make the right decisions on right time and lead you towards accomplishing the results you’ve desired.
The famous life coach Tony Robbins figured out that, “Problems are the gifts that make us figure out who we are, what we’re made for, and what we’re responsible to give back to life.” Enlightening! Professional people are motivated people. They plan their profession towards greatness and work hard even if they are not feeling like it. They’re in control of how they react and look for the opportunities in every situation. They strive for superiority in their profession and make results their topmost priority.
We, as professionals need to balance our life, but we have to focus on work also, at the same time have to manage time for family, friends or other social interaction & recreational actitvities. One also has to overcome the ‘professional fatigue’, which happens due to monotony of work. Individuals and institutions need to reinvent themselves and do new things at least every five years. Remember Steve Jobs question: ‘when was the last time that you did something for the first time?’
Professional competency and excellent surgical skills are another important factors to achieve professional excellance. These are essential to catapult anyone beyond competition and make him stand out amongst the crowd.
No profession is free from problems and challenges, no professional career can be without its ups and downs. The sooner you accept the truth, the better and easier it is for you to grow and excel your skills.Majority of people do not have control over their responses or reactions. When faced with a problem, they get angry or agitated and hold everyone responsible for such a horrendous situation. They handle the situation irrationally and end up mounting more problems. It is the strength of the family, the support of true friends and advice from colleagues that will help one to sail to the top. love and support from the family, good friends, and probably also religion and faith are also important factor that help professionals to reach to the top.
We must transform ourselves from an individual to an institution and building an excellent team. The need for a committed team is echoed in the Chinese proverb, ‘if you want to walk fast, walk alone; if you want to walk far, walk together’. The power of a committed team and the collective wisdom of a group are incomparable to even the best of an individual.
* Pashupati Chaudhary: Professor, Department of Orthopaedics (Consultant Orthopaedic and Spine Surgeon) at B.P. Koirala Institute of Health Sciences,Dharan, Nepal.
** Opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of The Asia Live.