The Business of Being the Best – 7 Key Characteristics

In every field, certain individuals excel and demonstrate outstanding performance. Many aspire to emulate these leaders, but are unsure how to attain their goal.

In The Business of Being the Best, Molly Fletcher suggests that the top performers in all professions have a common set of traits. She believes that everyone can study these seven characteristics, learn how to incorporate them into their own lives, and reach greater levels of success.

My co-worker recommended the book to put things in perspective. I was caught up in the rat race of corporate America and got lost on my path of life.

This book provides a great roadmap showing me what it takes and what I need to do to get back on track. I took out my highlighter and i am now focused on the books main points.

Creating a Personal Definition of Greatness. One way to develop a personalized definition of greatness is to ask questions like: Why do you want to be the best? What will being the best mean to you in one year and in five years? What steps will be necessary to become the best? In addition, “the best” share six qualities.

These include continually striving for excellence, flexibility, self-confidence, being forward-looking and goal-oriented, and focusing on solutions.

The Power of Negotiation. In Fletcher’s experience, she has found that the best spend significant amounts of time enhancing their negotiation skills. The best understand the three Ds of negotiation: discover, demonstrate, and deliver. Successful negotiators also convey three personality traits to potential partners: trustworthiness, rapport, and awareness.

Before a negotiation begins, Fletcher recommends creating a blueprint for the discussions based on three key elements: understanding the big picture, understanding the motivation, and understanding the inside and outside factors of the negotiation.

The Importance of Communication. People who excel in their fields understand that communication helps form relationships and also enables idea-sharing for personal and professional development. The best assess each situation and select the most effective communication method.

How a person communicates is often more important than the content that is communicated. Other important communication considerations include listening and being true to one’s word.

Becoming More Likable. When people are likable, others are drawn to them and likability is a skill that anyone can learn. Fletcher has developed five mantras that people can use to make themselves more likable: be authentic; if you are going to do it, give it 100 percent; be optimistic and energetic; use 360 degree awareness; and exceed expectations.

The Value of Giving Back to Others. Another trait associated with high performers is the desire to improve the community around them. Helping others offers personal benefits, as well as business benefits. In Fletcher’s experience, the best listen to their inner voice and find a need in the community that resonates with their personal beliefs.

Cultivating Leadership Skills. The best leaders understand that teams working together generate more impressive results than individuals working towards the same goals.

Fletcher believes that successful leaders exhibit four traits: good sense, impartial integrity, balanced determination, and resilient courage. Great leaders also differentiate themselves by developing a vision and sharing it with others.

Building a Personal Brand. High performers package their skills and present them to clients through a personal brand. To create a road map for a personal brand, people must answer three key questions: What is your passion? What is your purpose and why? What is your motivating force?

Once a personal brand road map has been developed, high performers understand that they must differentiate themselves through rare and exceptional actions.

In The Business of Being the Best, Molly Fletcher explains why the best do what they do and how they do it. Every chapter includes practical steps for developing the traits associated with high performers.

Each chapter stands alone, so the book can be read in order or readers can focus only on those sections which are of greatest interest.

The Business of Being the Best is relevant to readers in any field who want to improve their performance in their personal or professional lives.

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