The best advice Anne Martin received* while starting her career as an investment banker was that she didn’t need to do every good deal, but every deal she did had to be good. As CIO of Wesleyan University, the advice has followed her throughout her career. It can apply to ours as well.
We don’t have to work on every good project, but every project we work on has to be good.
We don’t have to win every good client, but every client we take on has to be good.
We don’t have to hold every good position, but we have to do good work at every position we hold.
When we accept we can’t do it all, we start to focus on doing what we can do really well. That’s value additive – for ourselves, for those we work for, and for those we work with.