Competition vs. Self-motivation

Seth Godin’s advice on this issue is to “run your own race.”  Godin continues, “the rear view mirror is one of the most effective motivational tools ever created.”

I would say that it is also one of the most seductive sources of motivation. If you listen to interviews with elite athletes– especially those who participate in individual rather than team sports– you’ll hear phrases such as: “playing my own game,” “staying focused,” or “performing at my level.”  It is common for people (or athletes) to perform better with competition, however, you will be subject to your competition showing up in their best form.

Self motivation is and always will be the most important form of motivation. Driving with your eyes on the rear view mirror is exhausting. It’s easier than ever to measure your performance against others, but if it’s not helping you with your mission, stop.  Read Seth’s post here.

Run your own race.

Thank You Notes Increase Your Chance of Success

This is from a national survey of more than 2,800 U.S. employers, conducted by CareerBuilder.

  • More than one-in-five (22 percent) hiring managers say they are less likely to hire a candidate if they don’t send a thank-you note after an interview;
  • 86 percent say it shows a lack of follow-through;
  • 56 percent say it sends the message that they aren’t really serious about the opportunity;
  • 89 percent of hiring managers say it is OK to send a thank-you note in the form of an e-mail, with half saying it is actually the way they prefer to receive them;
  • IT hiring managers are the most eager to receive e-mail, rather than written thank you notes;
  • The majority of those in the financial services like hand-written and USPS delivered notes better, but say that e-mail is still acceptable.

Thank you notes are not just for interviews.  Invest 5 minutes to stand out from the crowd after meeting a customer, prospect, mentor or business partner.  If speed is critical (i.e., timing is an issue) such as an interview or a competitive sales situation, send an email and a hand written note.  If speed is not critical, always opt for the hand written note.

So what should be included in a thank you note? . . .  Read the full CareerBuilder post here.