The Hierarchy of Success as it Relates to Killing Kittens

I talk a lot about Seth Godin’s Hierarchy of Success.  Here’s the gist:

  1. Attitude
  2. Approach
  3. Goals
  4. Strategy
  5. Tactics
  6. Execution

How often do you start at the execution (Just Do It) phase for every-day tasks?  Almost always, right?  Some things just don’t need goals, a strategy, or tactics to accomplish – like feeding the cat.

Except… really, they do.  So let’s say your cat is reasonably well-fed.

The unspoken, overarching goal is to avoid killing the cat.  I could be wrong.

Your approach is to be kind to animals based on your attitude of liking animals.  Your strategy to avoid killing the cat is to feed the cat on a regular basis, dictating a tactic of feeding once per day at noon.

The hierarchy of success is (part of) why you feel guilty when you forget to feed the cat.  Inverting this little fairy tale, the hierarchy of success is why you feel good when you do something you genuinely care about and why you feel meh about the things you don’t.

In business, this is especially true. Everything you do should be defined by your attitude and approach; if not, why do it?