V is for Peter Vidmar: Getting A Perfect 10

Peter Vidmar won a Gold Medal in gymnastics at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.

Looking back at how his event was scored in those days, he describes the steps people took to score the Perfect 10, which was first achieved by Nadia Comaneci in Montreal.

Firstly, they must achieve the Olympic standard of technical competence. This often took years of dedication and would give them the 9.4.

They could then add 0.2 by taking a risk; 0.2 by demonstrating originality – something that had never been done before; and 0.2 by showing virtuosity – flair.

Such a brilliant performance would produce the Perfect 10 and, hopefully, the Olympic Gold.

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Peter is a class act who now makes his living as an inspiring speaker. Many people leave his sessions fired up. Some say:

“We can now believe in our dreams. All we have to do is to be original, take risks and demonstrate virtuosity.”

They only forget one thing. Peter’s most important message is that people must first achieve the 9.4. That is the first step towards winning an Olympic Gold.

Here are some suggestions for following these steps in your own way.

You can choose activity where 
you can achieve a Perfect 10

You will obviously start by playing to your strengths. So it is important to focus on an activity in which:

You get positive energy.

You are prepared to put in the perspiration and purposeful practice.

You have the ability to deliver peak performance. 

What is your professional version of the Olympics? Which is the ‘event’ in which you can win a gold medal?

On the other hand, you may not be interested in ‘competition’. You may be a pioneer who invents a new event.

Great performers are, by definition, extremists. They are extremely good at what they do. In the business world, for example, they are often brilliant niche suppliers.

So focus on the activity where you are in your element – at ease and yet also able to excel. There is no point in going into an event where, at best, you can only get a 6/10.

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You can work hard
to achieve the 9.4

Class acts build on their strengths. They are also prepared to sweat. They pursue the right strategy, find solutions to challenges and work hard to achieve success.

How can you pursue this path in your own way? Start by clarifying your picture of success. This is the ‘What’.

Then clarify your key strategies for reaching the goals. This is the ‘How’. Focus on:

The three key strategies I can follow to give
myself the greatest chance of success are:




Clarify your road map, complete with milestones, and set out on the road towards achieving your goals.

You can then develop your daily disciplines. Start each day with an early success, perform superb work and encourage yourself on the journey.

Keep doing the right things in the right way until they become second nature. Do everything possible to reach your equivalent of the 9.4.

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You can add the risk, originality and 
virtuosity to achieve the Perfect 10

Class acts deliver the goods at vital moments. Providing the foundation is in place, they may take what appears to be a risk.

But in their minds – or in their muscle memory – they have done it a thousand times. One person said:

“People say that I take risks, but I have already rehearsed all the scenarios, explored the possible strategies and settled on the way forward.

“I feel comfortable with what I am doing. In fact, it would be a greater risk not to take what appears to be a risk.”

Great performers also do something that appears original. But it is the result of spending hours, days or months finding creative solutions to challenges. Then comes the final piece: virtuosity, flair or showmanship.

Great performers add that touch of class. They do something magical that stays in people’s minds forever.

How can you follow these steps in you own way? How can you build on the 9.4 and try to produce your equivalent of the perfect 10?

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