How to Achieve Peak Performance…Consistently

Have you had a day you just crushed it? The day you gave an excellent presentation, facilitated a breakthrough meeting or closed the big deal? It was like playing basketball, and every shot you took was finding the basket. But in the following weeks, the magic disappeared, and you couldn’t duplicate your moment of glory.

Why aren’t we consistently leading, presenting, developing, creating, or even parenting at our peak? Apparently, our outcomes depend on our behaviors, actions, strategies, and techniques. Don’t they? 

The problem is that when we try to repeat the same behaviors, actions of our peak performance, sometimes, or most times, we don’t reach our peak. We fail to be the best version of ourselves. 

Why is this happening and how do some people consistently deliver peak performance?

The answer is not in what we do but how we do it and who we are when we try to accomplish those outcomes. 

Our state of mind, or state of “being,” makes all the difference between underperformance and high performance. 

Different states of mind applied to similar behaviors yields different results. For example, athletes who compete in what they have practiced thousands of times, accomplish their best results when they are ‘in the zone’, or some say ‘in the flow’. 

Champions set their mindset before a competition. They dive deeply into their mind to access hidden energies. They deploy the highest alertness, focus, and determination. It’s an entirely different state of 'being'. 

Public speakers and performers follow similar routines and switch their state of 'being' just before stepping on stage. Pilots, who are ready to take off, stop for a moment, take a deep breath, and change their state of being before they release the brakes and push the throttle forward to maximum power. 

Highly accomplished CEOs and executives also pre-define the state of being in high stakes situations. Many of them use a 6-step process called the BE-DO-HAVE Matrix.

Step 1- Current “HAVING” Results

Let’s say you’re involved in high stake sales transactions. You aren’t happy with the outcomes of sales interactions with potential customers. The current closing rate is around 25%, but you believe it should be much higher. 

Step 2 - Future “HAVING” Results 

In the second step, you decide on your desired results. Your goal is to double the future closing rate from 25% to 50%. You believe it’s highly achievable because your company provides superior service. You also only meet potential customers after the sales team qualifies the prospect, identifies the problem and ensures your solution would fit the potential client.  

Step 3 - Current “DOING” Behaviors 

In the third step, you evaluate your current behaviors that impact your current results. In our example, you reflect on the following actions: 

I talk too much. I need to listen more to the potential customer hidden signals.   

I rigidly follow my pitch/presentation instead of adjusting it to the client’s needs.  

I focus on our solution more than on the client’s specific problem. 

If you aren’t sure what are the behaviors that lead to your results you may consider getting feedback from colleagues and customers or take assessment tools such as the Leadership Behavioral Profile. 

Step 4- Future “DOING” Behaviors 

In step 4 you define the behaviors and the actions that will lead to expected outcomes, in our example 50% closing rate. 

Surprisingly, deciding on future behaviors is less daunting than thinking on improvements. In most cases, the opposite behaviors are excellent starting points. In our example: 

•   I will talk less and listen carefully to hidden signals and challenges of the client. 

•   I will ask thoughtful questions based on the client’s inputs. 

•   I will rephrase every statement with a question. 

•   I will direct the conversation to the client’s needs to intensify the problem. 

After every event that you haven’t delivered peak performance, revisit the BE-DO-HAVE matrix. You will come up with new behaviors that may yield better outcomes. 

Step 5- Current “BEING” States 

Step 5 is the “secret sauce” of the whole process. Most of us KNOW what the behaviors that improve our results are, but we don’t hold on to them. There two reasons why it's hard to discover what state of “being” is accountable for unwanted behaviors: 

1.   We can't see our blind spots 

2.   We make more subconscious decisions than conscious ones 

A trusted advisor, who is not your best friend or colleague, will best give you unbiased and truthful feedback. In our example: 

•   I'm cautious. I avoid discussing real problems with a prospect 

•   I'm a pleaser. I’m agreeable to create a pleasant atmosphere 

•   I'm anxious. I'm afraid to lose the deal. Millions of dollars are at stake including my career, success, or commission. 

Step 6 – Future “BEING” State 

The last step is the icing on the cake. You define the state of 'being' that activates the desired behaviors that generate the desired results. As is the previous steps the opposite state of 'being' is usually the wanted one: 

•   I'm fearless/courageous 

•   I'm a critical thinker 

•   I'm a challenger 

•   I'm fully present and attentive 

The words you use help you distinguish between BEING state and DOING behavior. Adjectives best describe BEING states while verbs best describe DOING behaviors.  

The above order is how I use the BE-DO-HAVE Matrix, but you can find what works better for you. Some people work their way from current to future in this order:

Try these variations to realize what works best for you.


Transformation happens when you discover what state of BEING helps you to accomplish the desired outcomes.

Track your associated results, behaviors, and states. 

Reflect often on your success until you accomplish consistent peak performance. 

High performers in all areas of life have validated this process. It’s powerful stuff. You can create different matrixes for different outcomes you would like to accomplish. For example, I have a matrix for my business development outcomes, and I have a matrix for my creative outcomes.   

CEOs and Executives who want to become high performers can discover and leverage their natural approach to problems, people, pace and procedures (4P's) by taking the  Leadership Behavioral Profile. You will get instant access to your comprhensive profile with tips about your communication preferences, ideal work environment, insights into your effectiveness, motivations, continual improvment, training and learning style, and success connection. 

Copyright © 2018. Dave Osh