Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Are You Competent or Extraordinary?

I'm going to keep this posting short, since I'm busy putting final touches on a workshop I'm conducting next week in Norman, OK - Software Testing for Weather Applications. I've always been a weather "enthusiast" and being in Oklahoma we get our share of wild weather for sure!

I was watching a program on CNBC the other evening in which a panel of millionaires were giving insight into their motivations for becoming rich. The thing that really stuck with me and I think applies to anyone that wants to be successful (regardless of how much money you make) is that really successful people go way beyond just being competent in what they do. They work hard to become the best. They are exceptional in what they do.

I've taught for many years that testers need to build "core competencies". I'm thinking I need to start teaching that is just the starting point. Just being able to write a test plan isn't good enough anymore. How can you show your value in other ways?

In fact, in my workshop, "Becoming an Influential Test Team Leader" (which I'll be presenting in September in Indianapolis and October at StarWest) I describe seven ways you can add value and it doesn't require any money. It does require dedication and motivation, though.

This also requires that you work on yourself. The reason I know this is because that's what I've been doing the last 20 years. What I mean is that you have to become a person of character, trust, and integrity. You will be tested!

It means reading the right books - inspiring ones, not comics, listening to the right teaching to get a solid philosophy of life.

To be extraordinary doesn't mean you won't make mistakes. The panel of millionaires also agreed that they've all made plenty of mistakes. The key is to learn from them and not to be derailed by them.

Helping people become extraordinary is what I do. That's why I train all over the world and give stuff away on the web site ( If I can help you, just let me know.

Enjoy the journey!


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