How Elite Executives Maximise their Own Human Capital

The best executives are artists. It can be hard for people in industries other than the media or arts to view themselves as creative. But, when an executive produces art; a new strategy or way of doing things, then they generate the greatest amount of value and become an indispensable part of the organisation.

So how does an executive become indispensable?

The answer isn’t to do more work. The answer isn’t more time in the office. The answer is to focus on the Hierarchy of Value:

Lift — Hunt — Grow — Produce — Sell — Connect — Create/Invent

There will always be people on the left, doing the hard work that is easy to learn. As you move to the right, the work gets physically easier but the number of people who are capable of doing the work gets smaller. Selling is a skill that a few people can learn but almost no one puts in the work to create or invent. That is up to you.

What makes connecting and creating difficult is that you have to be fearless. It means being able to take intellectual risks and find your own path. The elite executives acknowledge this fear and proceed anyway. This is the return on the investment of weeks in the gym, pushing into the fear and testing their physical capabilities. The fear doesn’t go away, but what you do with the fear defines you. The lesser man stops, the Executive Athlete marches on.

Fatigue trumps fearless. Similar to an athlete, fatigue destroys performance. It forces the executive to play safe, blend in and avoid standing out. The only way to become indispensable is to stand out and be different. Fatigue makes the executive slide down the hierarchy of value. They fail to innovate and focus on tasks that normal people can do.

Elite executives get the most out of their human capital by beating fatigue and remaining fearless. This unwavering feeling of invincibility only comes with premium health. What sets them apart is their commitment to managing their energy, stress, physical fitness and nutrition.

The elite who are able to strike that delicate balance between work and their health are connectors. It’s immediately apparent. They form connections effortlessly, they’re engaging and warm and they show a desire to strengthen and broaden their network of like-minded people. This invariably surrounds them with a cloud of respect, and people seek out those who have earned this kind of respect.

I call the elite Executive Athletes. I also call them artists.

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