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The president of a successful company was asked what it took to bet to the top. "The same thing it took to get started," he replied, "a sense of urgency."

The people who make things move in this world share this same sense of urgency.

No matter how intelligent or able you may be, if you don’t have this sense of urgency, now is the time to start developing it. The world is full of very competent people who honestly intend to do things tomorrow, or as soon as they can get around to it. Their accomplishments, however, seldom match those of less-talented people who are blessed with a sense of the importance of getting started now.


One of the fine arts of management is the ability to communicate this sense of urgency to the people who work for you without haranguing and without being unpleasant about it. The best method is by showing your personal interest I their projects and their jobs, checking on progress, and being quick to help in any way you can.

Some employees—even though they may be extremely able—are naturally slow movers. Review plans with these people. Have them tell you when they will definitely start something. Get them to estimate how soon it ought to be finished. Then follow up and see that they carry through as planned. Lend a hand I any way you can to keep them on schedule. Show your pleasure when they make good on their promised performance.

Some employees react quickly, enjoy getting things done promptly, and like to beat deadlines. When you hve people like this, be sure that you aren’t the bottleneck. Give them attention immediately when they need it. Don’t let them be frustrated by waiting for your decisions, slow-moving procedures, or unnecessary red tape. Make it your job to clear the roadblocks out of their way.

There’s no substitute for interest. Things a leader is obviously interested in tend to get done first and on time. If the manager isn’t interested, they may get done later—or perhaps not at all.

Be interested and stay interested—from start to finish.


A study at a major university attempted to delineate the factors involved in the typical person’s ability to translate the acceptance of an idea into the implementation or application of that idea, to motivate us to turn thought into action. The results were as follows:


1. Hear an idea that you like (10%)
2. Consciously decide to adopt the idea (25%)
3. Decide when you will do it (40%)
4. Plan how you will do it (50%)
5. Commit to someone else that you will do it (65%)
6. Have a specific future appointment with
the person you committed to, at which time
you will report to him whether you have done it.(95%)

This is all about the awakening of the inner motivation and strength of self-discipline.

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