The cliche “perfect practice makes perfect” is accurate because each time we practice perfectly we perform a task as well as we possibly can. When we try to do our best, every mistake is obvious — and then we can learn from those mistakes, adapting and modifying our techniques so we constantly, even if only incrementally, we improve.
That’s where talent and effort intersect. Skill, like talent, isn’t an end result. Skill is a process.
Whatever you do, you can do better. It doesn’t matter if it’s a physical task, or making sales calls, or managing employees, or conducting interviews. Any task can be performed better and more efficiently. To improve, don’t make the mistake of simply working harder. Shake things up. Reinvent a skill that has over time become automatic — but not perfect.
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