Then this Daniel became distinguished above all the other high officials and satraps, because an excellent spirit was in him. And the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. Daniel 6:3
Everyone has a vision, a dream, an idea. Everyone wants to do something great with their life. But one thing that will distinguish one from another is excellence.
Excellence is the quality of being outstanding, and to be outstanding you’ve got to stand out—stand out of the rest. Excellence is what makes one preferred to the other. If money is not an issue, it is what influences the choice. It is the determinant factor in every decision. And that is why we need to pay attention to it.
If you ever own an Apple Inc. product be it an iPhone, iPad or a MacBook, you’d agree with me that you’re looking at a near perfect product. It’s like no detail is left out. Nothing is overlooked. Now, I’m not one of those that would stay in line overnight to get the latest iPhone but there’s no denying the fact that any Apple product is a masterpiece.
The brain behind it all was Steve Jobs. He was not a particularly loved person during his life time. Walter Isaacson, his biographer, said of him:
Jobs’s prickly behavior was partly driven by his perfectionism and his impatience with those who made compromises in order to get a product out on time and on budget.
And that is what excellence is all about. It is doing whatever you’re doing so well that it could not be improved upon. It is making sure that every i is dotted and every t is crossed. It is going the extra mile.
But to do this, you’ve got to love what you do. Steve Jobs himself said: “If you don’t love something, you’re not going to go the extra mile, work the extra weekend, challenge the status quo as much.” That is what it takes.
Daniel, the man mentioned in the scripture above so much distinguished himself that the king was going to set him above all others. That is the reward of excellence. It sets you above your equals. It makes you to be preferred. It makes your product or service to be the number 1 choice.
But then, note that it is a spirit. That means you can’t fake it. You either have it or you don’t. It is a way of life; it is an attitude, a mindset. It is a way of doing things. And it starts with even little stuff. When you have that spirit, you’ll even sweat the small stuff.
Friend, do you have that spirit? It manifests in making sure every loose end is tied; leaving no stone unturned. People with excellence spirit don’t make excuses; they don’t overlook anything. They don’t make compromises. No wonder they’re not always loved but then, they’re always preferred. Why? Because they get things done, and that very well.