One of my favorite topics to write about is new leadership books and I love sharing when it comes from someone who was at the leading edge of the master class.
It also helps when it is someone I was particularly fond of.
When I learned that my late friend Bob McCurdy’s posthumous book called “The Quest for Excellence” The Chase for Self Mastery and Leadership Distinction” had been released it was a no brainer that I would write about the book and share some thoughts, not only to share his insights but to also spread his word and the hard work he put into the book.
The book is chock full of tremendous insights and inspiration from a man who was driven by the idea of continuous improvement.
I think a better way to put it he was obsessed with continuous improvement and the book is a testament to Bob’s drive.
Bob details a series of life lessons and business lessons that are a proven backbone to winning.
In the life lessons department Bob refers to “The Formative Years” and his intense drive to outwork anyone he collaborated with or competed against(Life Lesson #1-The One Who Outworks the other usually wins.)
Bob showcases his wide array of influences that span his business experience and his sports career including Life Lesson #3-If you are not improving, someone else is, with the quote from Hall of Fame Basketball Coach Pat Riley “Excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better”.
Bob and I shared a passion for the work and words of Hall of Fame basketball coach John Wooden who help foster Life Lesson #6-Don’t be derailed from pursuing your dreams with his quote that Bob acknowledges-“Don’t give up on your dreams, or your dreams will give up on you”
Bob gets to his business lessons in Chapter 4 which is titled “This is a Helluva lot harder than basketball” and those lessons served Mr. McCurdy very well.
I love Bob describing what he called his “PDR habit” which is his core Business Lesson #3-The importance of Practice, Drilling and Rehearsing-P D R and how he turned his home into his own “ personal university.”
The visual of him turning his home office loose with energy and new found learnings comes shining through in his narrative.
That thread around continuous improvement also comes echoing back with Business Lesson #12-The Skills that got you there are not enough to keep you there as Bob sites the great Julius Erving-“The key to success is to keep growing in all areas of life-mental, emotional, spiritual, as well as physical.”
There are so many precious elements of the book but in particular are Bob’s memos from his Katz days as well as his Beasley days which are all captured here.
The “Quest for Excellence” is a mandatory read to motivate you and your organization to greater heights.
Quite simply that was Bob.
Always striving for greater heights.
Bob passed away last year after a valiant fight with cancer and I remember how driven he was to finish the book as he was racing against the countdown clock of life.
Miss him now more than ever!
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