Obsession: Beating the Buzzer

by | Thoughts

The 2016 Final Four is over—finally. The highlight of the championship game was the buzzer beater at the end of the game. In this instance, beating the buzzer was a good thing for Villanova, a bad thing for North Carolina.

Beating the buzzer can be both a good and a bad thing when the issue is performance. Perpetually, waiting for the last moment to act is risky. If the reason for rushing is habitual procrastination, then one must pay the preparation price and take action.

Last minute shots rarely equal nothing but net. Scoring well in areas of efficiency and effectiveness demands structure. Structure sets the stage for the celebration of incremental “finished-ness.” The celebration of incremental “finished-ness” diminishes the need for frantic, last minute approaches.

Taking strengths too far can be problematical. Teasing taken too far can equal torturer. Taking eye contact too far can equal a staring down. Friendliness taken too far can equal a loss of objectivity. Taking buzzer beaters too far can equal relying on the myth of perpetual miracles, rather than paying the preparation price. Relying totally on buzzer beaters is neither wise nor productive—you will reach the point where you are so far behind that the buzzer beater is moot.

Methods are more dependable than miracles. Work is stronger than wishing. The practice that equals paying the preparation price is more reliable than hoping to beat the buzzer.

Stephen is the best-selling author of 26 books, including What Do They See When They See You Coming? He has also written countless articles for a variety of publications and has produced multiple audio books and video programs. Stephen has appeared on PBS Television and XM Sirius Satellite Radio. He continues to hold one of the highest invite-back ratios in the speaking profession.