Even When No One Is Watching

The mark of dedication and commitment is to do the hard stuff – even when no one is watching.

Through the line
Photo credit: Players engage in endurance running drills during a San Diego All-Stars Club basketball practice at Miramar College. Sandy Huffaker

I was watching basketball drills (and realized it’s the same as baseball and softball) – one of the drills was to run and run and run because that’s what’s required to build up stamina for a season. The drill is called running through the line.  The player is asked to run a series of sprints across the court or field.  The trick is to run THROUGH the line, not just TO the line.  It’s good exercise and is a measure of thoroughness, commitment…you get the idea.

It’s a place where many athletes cheat…just a little bit.   Wait – it’s not really cheating, is it? After all, who cares if I run through the line or just touch it or maybe just come close?  What does it matter?

It matters.  In fact, it’s a matter of integrity.  Consider athletes getting ready for their seasons, or customer service reps who are responsible for the satisfaction of the person on the other end of the phone. I think of all of those moments when a supervisor, a boss or a parent is not watching. Why is there an inclination to slack off just a little bit because no one will notice?

If it’s worth doing well, isn’t it always worth doing well simply because it’s worth doing?

Does quality in your organization – or in your life require supervision? Or is it a matter of self-management and pride?  Always remember to run through the line.

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