We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit.
Aristotle, a great Greek philosopher, coined those powerful words more than 2000 years ago. Achieving excellence in our lives becomes a reality when we take pride in our actions and focus on doing all of the little things with greatness. While striving for excellence starts as a goal, it materializes through dedication, planning, and auditing.
In many ways I am both a perfectionist and a workaholic. My mom teases me that it is a good thing that I live on a farm where my girls can go with me to work—otherwise they might never see me. While this is an exaggeration, my life very simply revolves around my family and my farm.
All of my years of athletic training combined with my naturally inclined Type A personality have created a passionate working machine. When you add into the mix the dreamer that lives somewhere deep in my heart, you get a unique and driven individual.
For better or for worse, I have very high standards that I live my life by. Because my cattle feed yard is an integral part of my life, it is a natural progression for me to hold it to high standards as well. When I look for companies and programs to associate my feed yard with, I look for those that share my same commitment to excellence and integrity.
I mentioned in Tuesday’s post that I was currently going through the certification process for a QSA (Quality Systems Assessment) program called Progressive Beef. The Progressive Beef program is based on three pillars: food safety, animal care, and sustainability.
Both the mom and the cattle feed yard manager in me love those pillars. How could I not? I spend my life raising animals that will be harvested to feed my children and children all over the world. A focus on these three areas is absolutely critical to achieving the high standards of excellence which Aristotle compels me to accomplish.
Since many customers report that they would like to see their grocery store carry a beef product that uses a verified program, I am hopeful that many of you will share my excitement as I earn the right to participate in Progressive Beef. I am also hopeful that you will engage in the conversation as I continue to explain the components and auditing process of the program.
I feel compelled to end by sharing some beautiful words from Mother Theresa:
You and I have been created for greater things. We have not been created to just pass through this life without aim.
What motivates you to strive for excellence?