Don’t Settle for Steak Knives

On Fire At Work

I’m currently reading this incredible book on employee engagement, On Fire at Work by Eric Chester. I highly recommend it if you’re in a position of leading other people.

Chester describes the scene from the movie Glengarry Glen Ross. Alec Baldwin’s character is a gruff, no-holds-barred type sales manager and he lays out the scenario for the remaining sales people. He says, first prize for most sales is a Cadillac Eldorado, second prize is a set of steak knives, third prize is you’re fired.

In this type of work environment, there are no real winners – just survivors. Too many employers settle for workers that do enough not to be fired. Conversely, too many employees do *just* enough not to be noticed. It’s settling for mediocrity.

We’re all a bunch of steak knives waiting to put in our time to get to the weekend.

I think this can happen with our own lives as well. We can find a comfortable groove and settle for cruise control. But if you stay there too long, you’ll eventually settle for less and less. Like the frog that doesn’t know it’s in the slowly boiling pot, mediocrity slowly kills off any initiative, hopes, or goals we’ve had.

Do you feel like you’ve settle recently?

Me too.

Here’s how I’m getting out of my “steak knives” funk:

  1. Re-establish my goals for 2015.
  2. Reach out to a few close friends to keep my accountable on a weekly basis.
  3. Pray for strength to persist.

What is it that you want to get done before the year is over?


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