We’ve all heard that we should never withhold effort but rather “give it our all” when we do anything. Whether it’s playing a sport learning a musical instrument or leading a team of executives working to the best of your ability will result in better outcomes and personal pride for a job well done. As leaders giving 100 percent all the time is a challenge but one that will define you as someone who values the pursuit of excellence. 100 percent does not mean perfection and there will always be room for improvement despite success. Nevertheless here are a few tips I’ve learned along the way that make it easier to reach that 100 percent mark. Exercise Patience…It’s Still a Virtue The tendency to rush through things to get them completed sooner is nothing new. For generations executives and CEO’s have been struggling with patience- myself included. You want answers now not next week and you want to see results and a positive return on your investment instantly not over the long term. However with the goal of giving 100 percent of your skill attention and commitment rushing anything is at best counterproductive and at worst- destructive. Learning to slow down takes practice. The good news? Patience is still a virtue that can be developed over time. Think Qualitatively Not Quantitatively In a world where quotas and mathematical equations define success it’s difficult to think qualitatively. And being a Georgia Tech guy myself even I have a tendency to think numbers in almost everything I do. But the truth is when you take the time to focus on the “how” and “why” behind output it’s easier to maintain that high level you’re looking for. As is true with patience it takes practice to learn how to “re-train” the mind and there will always be exceptions where the numbers must be considered. Make it a point to at least consider how we can improve rather than by how much why changes will be worthwhile etc. Remember thinking qualitatively doesn’t mean you always have to have the answer; it simply means you should be willing to explore the possibilities. Can Anyone Really Give More Than 100 Percent? We’ve all been to those meetings where someone profoundly says they’re going to give “over 100 percent”. Really? What does it mean to give more than 100 percent? What exactly does 100 percent look like and how do you know when you’ve reached it? The truth is the right knowledge hard work and dedication will get you close to 100 percent every time but it’s attitude that will take you there. Anything more is pure fiction. The pursuit of excellence or giving 100 percent of yourself is a lifelong quest. As long as you’re prepared and willing to put forth the effort it’s attainable – and that’s all anyone can ask.