Good is the Enemy of Great

Tiger Woods won his 4th green jacket on Sunday and as usual I gathered with 4 of my golf buddies to eat a mock up of the champions dinner meal and watch the tournament. What I found most interesting about Tiger’s win was his insistence that he needed to change his swing in order to get better. Even with all the media criticizing him and questioning him, he knew what he had to do. He has no interest in being good…he only wants to be great.

Jim Collins, in his book Good to Great, says the enemy of great is good. As he studied thirteen companies that moved from good companies to great companies, he compared them with good companies that remain only good. (You’ll have to read the book for his definitions of good and great, although I have a feeling I’ll be referring to it some more as I delve into it further). Those who settled for good were destined to remain good.

to this 1 minute explanation by Jim Collins.

Ultimately, we’d love our students to try to achieve greatness but I’m watching teachers and myself to see if we want to be great. As was mentioned in my last post via Will R., …And frankly, I don’t know that I’ve learned as much from any other type of activity as I have from this type. And I learn when I’m doing just what I’m doing now (sweat on brow.)

I think we’re seeing some greatness emerge in our community of learners. Teachers working hard, trying to connect with each other and their students. I doubt before blogging that these were bad teachers. They were probably very good. I see a lot of good teachers and a few that want to be great. I hope I don’t let good stop me from being great.

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  • I struggle with this constantly. I want to be great, but, when I’m honest with myself, I frequently settle for good. Part of the appeal to me of building a PLN is that I have the opportunity to surround myself with people being examples of the kind of teacher I want to be, and also pushing me to be the kind of teacher I should be.

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