This week as our Leadership Team at my ministry was concluding our weekly meeting, I prayed these words: Lord, help us to be efficient and effective in everything that we do.
Later as I was reflecting on the meeting, those words came back to me, and I felt that I needed to amend my prayer by also asking God to make us excellent.
Taken separately, each word has its place and purpose in an organization. As each person becomes more efficient in their tasks and responsibilities, the organization functions with streamlined effort and maximum productivity.
But limiting functionality to simply doing things right does not leave room for influence, whether it be in personal relationships, within the community in which an organization is placed, or within the culture that we live.
Instead of doing things right (being efficient), we can consider doing the right thing (being effective). This elevates what we do to a much more purposeful endeavor, moving us beyond simply doing what's expected to doing what's important.
If we want to add that additional dimension to both being efficient and effective, we then seek to be excellent: using the tools, energies, creativity and wisdom that we've been given to make what we do the very best. I am not advocating perfectionism, but rather doing things that exceed expectations, including our own.
So whether we are seeking to be efficient: to make things run smooth and get the job done, or we are seeking to be effective: doing the things that will influence those around us, we can always move to the next level by seeking to be excellent!
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