A few decades back, when I first read the expression “Mediocrity breeds Mediocrity”, it really appealed me as a proverb but I didn’t fully understand its context and relevance with the corporate world. But slowly and gradually, it was so obvious that how true this expression is.
Before understanding the whole mediocrity circus in the corporate context as who actually is responsible for hiring, breeding and retaining the mediocre lot, right from the new entrant to the top management team members and how this adversely it affects the organisation as a whole, let’s see what is mediocrity? As Jim Collins very rightly points out in his book Good to Great: “Good is the enemy of great. And that is one of the key reasons why we have so little that becomes great. We don’t have great schools, principally because we have good schools. We don’t have great government, principally because we have good government. Few people attain great lives, in large part because it is just so easy to settle for a good life.”
Likewise, Mediocrity is the enemy of Meritocracy. It is a virus, probably much more deadlier than any viruses we know so far. Once a professional becomes infected, it spreads quickly and with vigour into their organisational psyche. Mediocrity can start to spread to others and before long, it brings everyone down, crippling your team’s chances of peak performance.
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