- Leandro Herrero - https://leandroherrero.com -

May I introduce you to our worst enemy? The word average

Random thoughts:

People content with average achievements in the market, launch a party when the statistics show a few points about average.

Does the average company have average management?

Certainly an average management team can get things done.

What about average ideas, no different from anybody else?  Average positions and views?

Is it OK to accept average results for your kids progress at school?

We refer to ‘the average mortal’, what is it? What does he or she look like?

What is an average employee? Would you hire one? Seriously, do you set out to hire the average on the short list?

Why the word average triggers so much comfort in some people and horrifies others?

What is average performance? What does it mean if the overall company performance is low?

The maths definition: ‘The term average may refer to the statistical mean, median or mode of a batch, sample, or distribution, or sometimes any other measure of central tendency’.

Guru Seth Godin says ‘Average stuff for average people is getting ever more difficult to sell. If that’s all you’ve got, get something else’.

My analytics on Daily Thoughts readership says that I am miles above the average ‘of the industry’. Should I launch a party?

Benchmarking got married to Best Practices and got an average family.

Enough average rambling.

I really believe that the word ‘average’ applied to our organizational world is simply lethal. The only question to deal with is the type of prolonged agony. But the death certificate is ready.

Average services, average consulting, average corporate speech, average client, average effort, average progress, average ideas, they are all waiting to enter the Organizational Intensive Care Unit. There is a waiting list I am afraid, there are no beds available.

Years ago, I would have agreed that ‘average’ could be a reasonable place to be for some people, if they choose to; and that it would be harsh to push for the extraordinary. Today, having grown up a bit, I think that average is a terrible place to be. The harsh side today is to agree with the normalisation and the lower common denominator.

Average, which origins and etymology come from ‘damaged goods’ (equalize loses and gains), is a word to be banned from the organization, from schools, from social change, from the aspirations of mankind. I keep quoting my favourite Management Consultant, Michelangelo, I know, quoted a thousand times and perpetuated on mugs and posters: ‘The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark’.

Not an average saying.