by Cassandra Sales
One of the greatest aspects of Compass is our values list. I say, ours, and not theirs because the moment you become a part of Compass you are indeed the living embodiment of the company. I could write about each and every value and the importance of them. However, one that stands out to me is excellence. Excellence is who we are and what we do, but really what is excellence? If you were to Google the term, you would find that excellence is the quality of being outstanding or extremely good. Great, that is what we all want to be, but let’s explore how one truly becomes excellent.
Excellence is not a task that we can check off every day. It’s not something where we say “Oh yeah today I was excellent at all these things.” Excellence is instead a trait, quality and mindset that we must always adjust our lens to have. Excellence is also not a buffet. You can not choose the things that you are excellent in, while essentially saying these other things just don’t matter. For example, if you kill it in a meeting – I mean you came prepared, you saw several people have “Ah-Ha” moments, and came out understanding the impact you just made you practiced excellence. Well, what if you left that meeting went into the bathroom and saw 3 empty toilet paper rolls next to the toilet seat and didn’t care enough to leave the room a little better than you found it. I mean you’re not the one who left them there. So who cares? Excellence cares.
Excellence says that my energy is contagious and how I leave each and every situation matters. Compass is a company of leaders from the field staff, to the office staff, to the Managers. We treat each and every position as a position of leadership. Leaders strive for excellence. However, leaders are also human. So we have the right to have rough days and situations, express ourselves and vent during those dark times. Right? I mean if we have our entire afternoon cleared to work on a program on the computer and all the sudden the program decides to freeze we can then rant about how that is affecting us. After all, we are mere mortals. However, those are the moments that determine if you are indeed a leader operating in excellence. The lens through which you see the world determines whether your cup is half empty or half full. So while some may use the computer program freezing as a reason to vent and start a snowball of negativity, others would utilize that time to problem solve, work on something else, or maybe I don’t know…go change the toilet paper roll.
’m sure you are reading this and thinking “Good grief someone has a pet peeve and it involves a toilet paper roll.” No, actually I don’t. How you decide to live your life in your bathroom has no effect on me whatsoever. However, I’ve listened may times to conversations of supervisors going into client’s homes and they not being near our standards of excellence in regards to cleanliness. The reality is, when our standards of excellence shine through, even in our own office bathrooms, these will impact our clients in their homes.
Excellence is something that needs to be lived out in every area. Not just in meetings or in things that we consider important, but in the small things like leaving the bathroom better than you found it by changing the toilet paper roll. Those are the things that spread to others. When we strive for excellence in every area, those who look up to us, like our staff and clients, notice. The things that are important to leaders become important to those we lead as well.
Similarly, we need to be aware of the energy we put out into the room. That same frozen computer program may be the cause of our frustration, but a person who strives for excellence chooses to keep their frustrations silent and keep the energy in the office positive. This is important and flows into every other area and person we come in contact with at Compass. If we keep our energy positive and embrace the spirit of excellence regardless of our situation, our clients and staff around us will be empowered to do the same!
There are two lenses through which to see life. One is obstacles are something that hinder progress. The lens of excellence sees that obstacles are actually stepping stones. Compass has a culture of excellence. Excellence starts at the top and doesn’t just trickle to the bottom. It instead flows much like a waterfall on a beautiful spring day. The little moments where you care enough to lend a hand or maybe change the tone of a conversation to the positive, those are the petri dish moments of excellence. May your excellence spread like wildfire.