I am constantly looking at ways in which individuals can enhance their performance and deliver high impact results faster. Research reveals how important mentors can be in personal development. I would totally agree that a mentor is a vital ingredient to an ambitious persons life plan. Many people have benefitted from the experiences of individuals they admire. With this in mind I came up with the concept of “Role Model Benchmarking” (RMB) some time ago, I have trialed it with a number of small groups – it went down a storm. Benchmarking has been around for years and it is used as an effective tool in enhancing company performance – essentially it’s a methodology where a company will rate itself against best in class, identify shortfall in performance then put a plan of improvement in place.
We can take the principles of this management tool and apply it to personal development – in other words benchmark yourself against individuals who inspire you. This approach will put momentum into change and accelerate you to achieving your goals, whether this is in life, career or business.
Just have a go at this simple exercise:
1. Define those individuals you consider brilliant – as part of your overall career or business strategy, think about those individuals you feel you could learn from – these are your role models, characters (real or fictional). Write down a list of five role models.
2. Clarify specifically what it is you admire – think about their skills, behaviours, strategies and approaches you consider could be beneficial in your own quest for success. Is it their networks, skills, knowledge, personal philosophies, values, attitude to life? You have to be very, very specific about what their qualities are e.g. great presenter, effective negotiation skills, amazing ability of winning new business, caring attitude, written a book….. List the 20 specific things you consider important.
3. Reflect on your list – Of the 20 very specific qualities, behaviours or strategies listed, you must cut this down to a maximum of ten admirable aspects of your role models “DNA”. These become the additives vital to you achieving your own goals and ambitions.
4. Benchmark yourself against these 10 aspects – rate your own performance against those characteristics you consider important on a scale of 1-10 (if you score 10 on any aspect you are not being honest with yourself). There are different visuals you can use to represent your results; the one I recommend is the wheel of life format.
5. Implementation – take action!
By benchmarking your own personal performance against what you consider great will lead to fast tracking personal development. RMB allows you to pin point very precisely what needs to improve or change. It brings practical focus to your learning and development, more importantly it will define specific areas for improvement. RMB will catalyse personal improvement!