The book is based on credible research into the differences between so-called “star” performers and average performers. The differences are not that surprising, but the key difference is the way star performers understand them vs. the average performer. A good example is the star quality of “taking initiative.” Average performers tend to view this as any idea they implement, whether it helps only them or others and whether it contributes to the bottom line or not. In other words, a lot of the average performers “initiative” is perceived by managers as just “doing their job”. Or, average performers take initiative in projects that don’t directly contribute to the bottom line, like planning the company picnic.
Stars, by contrast, see taking initiative as stepping outside their job description AND contributing something that improves the bottom line. An example might be to figure out a way to resolve a recurring service problem and then training colleagues in the method.
The book makes the case that star performers aren’t born. They don’t necessarily have above-average IQs nor possess any particular personality traits. The nine strategies identified in the book can be learned and used by anyone.
This book would make a great gift for a recent college grad.
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