McBride for Business Blog

What You’re Good at May Not Be What You Should Be Doing

September 20, 2017 // R. Shawn McBride // No Comments »

This is shocking for some people. If they feel good at something, it doesn’t necessarily mean it should be what you’re doing. Many of us have learned skills. You become good at certain things, but that doesn’t mean it’s your best use of time and effort. What are we supposed to do if we abandon things that we’re good at? How will we spend our time? How will we add economic value? I think that’s the challenge to think about.

Many of us started out doing things that we were good at. As Jim Collins has told us, “Good is the enemy of great.” We do things we’re good at. We make money off things we’re good at. We help others with things we’re good at. But we don’t add the ultimate value. We add the most value when we’re dealing with things we’re great at. How many of us have been doing things that we’re good at, but not doing the things that we’re great at? How many of us have fallen into the trap of being successful, and continue in the direction of success without thinking about the global impact and really what we could be doing even better.

For instance, in my world, I was trained as an accountant, and I passed the CPA exam on my first try. This is not very common, particularly back in the days when I took the exam, you had to take all four parts in one sitting. The odds of passing all four parts the first time you try were very low, yet I passed. I am a good accountant. Based on my grade and my exam experience, some people might even say I’m a great accountant, but that’s not my best use. My better use is a business advisor, as a business visionary. As somebody that helps people do what they want to do, making their plans work. Helping successful companies reach their goals, and helping companies stand the test of time. That’s where my passion is, that’s where I’m uniquely great. That’s where I’m differentiated from others.

There are a lot of good accountants in the world, and I can compete with them. I can make money as an accountant, but it’s not where I’m greatest, it’s not what I do the best. Many of us follow that trap, we do what we’re good at. I did it for a long time with big law firms. I was good as a big law firm associate, but I’m great as a business advisor and boutique law firm owner doing very, very tailored and very, very narrow niches of work. This is how I really, really help other people. This is how I help the economy, and that’s why businesses help me back. It’s led me to have a very unique knowledge and experience that I spread in a variety of ways to get it out there because I’m focused on my greatness.

I challenge you, what is your greatness? What are you focused on? Have you got caught up on the good? Have you got caught up in the things you’re sufficient at? Just doing the things you’re sufficient at is not going to get you to the next level. What are you doing to be great? Join us in the comments below and let us know about your experience in what you are doing.

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This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein.  This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique.  Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Michelle Kwajafa.


About the Author

R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.

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