Peak Performance

Best of Engagement blogs…

This was written this past summer while the Olympics were in full swing! The concept of peak performance – looking at where we’ve thrived and succeeded to apply to current difficulties as opposed to deficit management –  is something I strongly believe in.

I’m guessing many of you have been drawn to your televisions lately to catch your favorite events from the Summer Olympics. In my house, that’s women’s gymnastics. My daughter (2.5 years old) has been enthralled. “Mommy, look at that!” Her favorite has been the vault. After observing one, she promptly ran around the living room and attempted to vault our ottoman. I quickly put a stop to that but not before saying, “great job”!

These amazing performances have caused me to think about times I’ve enjoyed “peak performance” or at least very good performance. It’s a great tool in Appreciative Inquiry. As opposed to deficit management that looks at problems and tries to solve them, appreciative inquiry looks at times when we had great performance and figuring out how to bring those themes and elements into the present situation.

Think about a time when you had “peak performance”. What happened? What role did you play? What circumstances were in place that led to the outcome? When we focus on problems, that’s what we get, more problems. What we appreciate, appreciates. When we focus on success, we open our minds to possibility and creativity. If you’d like to share a peak performance with me, I’d love to hear about it. It’s a great way to begin to move forward.

Have an awesome weekend,


One thought on “Peak Performance

  1. Hi Lisa,

    The timing of your message is excellent. I had a recent experience that was refreshing and fits. I walked into work feeling unexplainably giddy. There really wasn’t a reason for this exuberant feeling but it was there and I ran with it. During the course of the day, I knocked out three major documents. Two of those documents were standard but oh that third one. I dreaded working on the third. Not because I wasn’t interested in the content, I just didn’t care for the conditions and perhaps even the politics surrounding that submittal. However, I took the positive feeling of that day, pulled together my research and took on the task with grim determination that at the end of the day, one of us was going to be left standing. I won. The feeling that I enjoyed in submitting good work, on and ahead of schedule … when I think of that joy and positivity, I still get enthused and use it to pull me through on other days.

    Hope this helps to promote your thoughts. I think I just took control and walked in with a “winning” attitude and it propelled me.


    Nina L. Junco
    STP Business Lead
    Systems & Planning

    Liked by 1 person

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