Working Under Pressure You Achieve Your Best Work
“I do my best work under pressure,” really, under pressure? I have heard this statement from many people who are up against a clock to get a project completed. Magically, they get super human abilities that allow them to think faster, focus harder, and manage their time more efficiently. If one really has this ability, would you want to develop it so you could perform at this level every day? It’s like a super hero who gets their magical powers, but doesn’t know how to use or control them. They work to perfect their fighting skills so they can use them to foil evil villains. The Hulk needs pressure to transform into a beast that has super human powers, but first he has to get really mad before reaching his optimal potential.
Imagine you build a team of sales staff with super human abilities that can accomplish their task with perfection. The only problem is you need to get them really mad and put them under a lot of pressure to perform. Really, is this the work environment that you want to work in? Would it not be best to develop you time management skills and improve your performance so your back is never against the wall?
Great professional athletes develop strenuous work ethics to insure they are performing at peak efficiency. I’ve never heard a professional athlete say, “I want to be down by 20 points in the final game of the final champion series with only minutes left and then I will start to play best game.” Instead you want them to say “We came here to kick butt and take names. That’s what we did; we came out strong and never let up. That is why we’re the best!”
Creating an image with co-workers that “you do your best work under pressure” is not the image you seek. You want the image that you give 100% on every project and you’re here to kick butt and carry them to the land of glory. Champions don’t have to work under pressure; they control it and put the pressure on those who can’t perform at their level.
1 thought on “Working Under Pressure”
I’m with you on this all the way. And the sports analogy was right on. Competitive athletes train to run much further than their sprint race requires, swim extra laps, lift at least that much weight, etc.
I had a professor in Music College who made us practice to 110%. (Obviously, math was not his strong suit.) He said you need to be at 110%, because you always lose a little bit, in concert, and nothing less than perfect would suffice.