Raise the Bar

Scott Westerman
3 min readOct 3, 2021

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Whatever you may be doing now, someone else is out there thinking about how to do it better. Why not be the one to raise the bar?

The track and field community at Medford High School thought sixteen-year-old Dick Fosbury was crazy when he started to run diagonally toward the high jump, launching himself back first and clearing the bar with ease. Today, every high jumper learns the Fosbury Flop and Debbie Brill’s Brill Bend. All it took were two kids who understood physics and had the courage to feel the fear and innovate anyway.

We blindly accept current realities, endure inconveniences, and put up with the barely acceptable because the mediocre performers hate change agents.

But nothing changes until someone raises the bar.

This mindset applies to whatever you’re up to. Got a to-do list? How can you sequence it to knock things off more efficiently? Stuck in an antiquated work process in a job you hate? If you ran the circus, what changes would you make? Map them out. Propose a test, a pilot program, an experiment.

Innovation happens two ways. Something like the Pandemic forces us to re-think our paradigms because we have to. Or we look over the horizon and imagine a different future, like Steve Jobs did with the iPhone, because we want to.