Expect to Win

Quote of the Week

“You have to expect things of yourself before you do them.”
Michael Jordan

Expect to Win

by Stephen R. Covey and Rebecca R. Merrill

According to Greek mythology, Pygmalion, the king of Cyprus, carved an ivory statue of the ideal woman. He named her Galatea. She was so beautiful that Pygmalion fell in love with her, and because of his deep desire and will for her to be real, with the help of the goddess Venus, he was actually able to bring her to life, and they lived happily ever after.

This ancient myth has come to serve as a metaphor that illustrates the power of expectation. While this phenomenon is commonly referred to as the ‘Pygmalion effect,’ it’s also been called the Galatea effect, the Rosenthal effect, self-fulfilling prophecy, positive self-expectancy, confidence, optimism, or just plan faith. In modern times, it’s been made popular through the musical My Fair Lady, a modern Pygmalion story in which a professor’s expectations become the catalyst that inspires the transformation of a Cockney flower girl into a lady.

The principle is simply this: We tend to get what we expect – both from ourselves and others. When we expect more, we tend to get more, when we expect to get less, we tend to get less (Covey, 2008, p. 121-122).

From: Covey, Stephen R. and Merrill, Rebecca (2007). The speed of trust: the one thing that changes everything. New York: Free Press.

Reprinted with permission from the OSU Leadership Center, Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210, (614) 292-3114, http://leadershipcenter.osu.edu.

Coaching Call to Action

This reminds me of something I heard this week, “what you appreciate, appreciates.” When you acknowledge who is around you, shifts occur. This week set your expectations and intentions on what you want from work, from a relationship, from a peer, from yourself. Set the bar wherever you want it and expect it can be. Then push it a little higher. Let me know what happens.