Monday, June 22, 2009

Five Percent Better

Ok so in my recent years I have been more a fan of watching golf than I have previously been in my life.  I love to watch Tiger play golf.  It is always amazing to see what he does on the golf course.  Now that I have, in the past couple years, actually started playing the game it is that much more amazing to see him do what he does.  

It was frustrating, as someone who loves to watch him do what he does, to see his play at this most recent US Open.  To see him only lose by four shots and be only one of a few players to hit under par on the last round is disappointing.  I'll admit I would love to see him keep winning and get the most majors of all time.  I want to be able to say I saw him play.  I watched him do that.  But there is something more that bothers me about this most recent tournament.  

4% was the difference between winning a fifteenth major victory for Tiger and placing where he did.  If Tiger had shot par on three holes that he shot double bogeys on and par on one more of the holes he boggied he would have been repeat US open champ.  That is only 4% of the holes over the course of four rounds of golf.  Could I approach 4% of what I do differently and have it be the final outcome be dramatically changed?  

You want to get more specific?  If Tiger’s shot total would have been two percent lower he would have won the US Open championship.  What is the difference between being the best and being good?  Two percent, Four percent. This is the margin between good and best?  That bothers me.  

If I did 5% of what I do better would it make that dramatic of a difference? To give 50% more energy or time into something is overwhelming.  But 5% I can do.  How do I become 5% better at what I do?  

Tiger said that his putting was off this week.  Ok that boils it down further.  Could I do one thing five percent better. If he had putted 5% better he would have won.  Could I do one thing that I do five percent better and have that mean the difference between average and exceptional?  What if I put that 5% extra into the wrong thing?  What if I only gave 3% more?  But what if all i needed to do to be exceptional was put 5% more into one thing and my outcomes would totally be different?  

What thing can I/you need to do 5% better at? 

What do I/you need to do to be 5% better at that thing?

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