Will second best really do? Is near enough good enough? Are you happy with just OK?
Successful people tend to say "no" to these questions.They set themselves high standards and work towards these, always checking that their results are pushing their boundaries. They desire exactness and fidelity. In short they Strive for Accuracy.
Often high achievers aren't trying to be "the best", but instead they are only trying to "their best". Their focus is on improvement, and on growth. High achievement is just a natural result of constant improvement.
People who Strive for Accuracy, whether it be in business, personal life, sports, music, the Arts ,or any other field, have a very strong growth mindset. They believe that they are capable of improvement, that there are no (or at least very few) limitations on what they can archive with appropriate effort and focus. Which is not to say they believe they are gifted or special in some way, quite the opposite. Developing a strong Habit of Striving for Accuracy means you take control of your goals and work towards them diligently.
Carol Dwecks excellent book "Mindset" is an essential read for anyone interest in improvement and success.
An important part of being able to Strive for Accuracy is understanding what your goals are - what quality looks like. The person who strives for accuracy has a goal in mind and checks their progress against that goal The two images below contrast nicely what it means to strive for accuracy and not.
Of course, like all the Habits of Mind, Striving for Accuracy is not something you need to do all the time. Like every habit, there are times when you should and times when you shouldn't engage in Striving for Accuracy. The person who Strives for Accuracy all the time is called a perfectionist. After all there's no particular need to Strive for Accuracy when buttering your toast in the morning!
In school we were taught to Strive for Accuracy when submitting work. We were suppose to check and proof read. Anyone who's ever had to hand in an assignment for school, or a report for work, and has relied on a spell checker to do the checking will appreciate the video below.