In a recent profile, Reid Hoffman declared that he is only operating at 60% of capacity/effectiveness. Given that this is coming from the founder/Chairman of LinkedIn, and someone who is also a Partner at Greylock, it makes you think twice. It made me wonder if I'm setting the bar too low.
The Stanford Graduate School of Business has done a nice job with its 'Insights' program. All/most of them are available to view online. I recently watched the one with Steve Schwarzman and his views on talent and hiring resonated with me.
He talks about assessing the talent in your organization on a scale of 1 to 10 (10 being best). He says,
"If you're a 10, God bless you. You'll be wildly successful. If you attract 10's, they always make it rain if you need rain. A 10 knows how to sense problems, design solutions, and do new things.
A nine is great at executing. They come up with good strategies, but not great strategies. A firm full of nines, that's a winning firm. Eights, they just do stuff that you tell them. And sevens and below, I don't know what they are since we don't tolerate them."
Let me paraphrase and augment the descriptions a bit:
-designs great strategies
-leads from the front
-senses problems/issues and resolves them
-constantly drives new initiatives and creates new value
-executes and delivers...over and over again
-designs good strategies
-demonstrates attributes of a great leader
-resolves issues quickly, as they are understood or highlighted
7 and below
I realized when I heard Schwarzman talking and then paraphrased per above, that my post on "Principles of Great Performance" was a bit off. In that post, I really defined the principles of an 8 or 9 performer. This confirmed that I am mentally setting the bar too low.
Perhaps I am operating at a mere 50% of capacity.
Other great Stanford Insights interviews:
Ajay Banga, Mastercard
Marc Andreesen, a16z
Vinod Khosla, Khosla Ventures