Predictability over... everything

Many years ago when I was at school I was serious about orienting. Once I even was 3rd in national championship. And the trainer always told us "Stability is a sign of mastery". No matter how fast you are on the training you've got to be able to repeat this result in real competitions throughout a season. Also you've got to be proficient with basics of the sport - you can not succeed without consistent results in long-distance racing. And no one in your team is going to take you seriously if you say "This will be my showtime" when your results record is like a wave of highs and deeps. When you are developing a software product you, first of all, run against your competitors on quality. And you will only be able to succeed if you can deliver consistent level of quality. Consistent external (perceivable by your users and customers) quality can only be achieved through stable internal (visible to your staff) quality. Of course, miracles sometimes happen and you can get a decent quality product without maintaining internal quality metrics. But you will never able to sustain this quality before you get internal processes and practices right. (By the way, if you think you've managed to do that, drop me a note -  I would love to know how it worked).

Jason Yip got a great quote on this from The Practice of Programming:

Consistency leads to better programs.  If formatting varies unpredictably, or a loop over an array runs uphill this time and downhill the next, or strings are copied with strcpy here and a for loop there, the variations make it harder to see what's really going on.  But if the same computation is done the same way every time it appears, any variation suggests a genuine difference, one worth noting.

Master your skill and deliver quality everyday even if no one notices that. And once you need to do your best you'll do that as you always do.