As a leader and business person, there is no shortage of shiny objects, squirrels and butterflies that we are exposed to every day. None. Zero. Nada. Zilch.
You are busy working through your ‘to-do’ list that you wrote out first thing this morning, then your manager asks you to look into something, or your phone rings and it’s a customer who’s order has gone missing… Before you know it, it’s now lunch time and you have not even looked at your list. Have you ever experienced that?
Shiny objects are abundant in our day-to-day lives. And, yes, there are things that you must stray off the path for (your manager’s request or a customer). However, if you really looked at your day and analyzed it, you would most likely discover that there are periods of time in every day that are within your control.
They’re these periods in your day that I’m talking about. And this is where discipline around your ability to focus and get things done will set you apart from other leaders that struggle to get things done. Important things. Stuff that will improve revenue or gross margin. Baby steps towards improving the engagement of your team. Cool stuff that will create happier customers. Or the not-thought-of-before stuff that helps optimize costs.
When it comes to focus, it’s all about developing the mindset of a pilot who is on the final approach for landing. When an airplane is coming in for a landing, there are all sorts of shiny objects that a pilot may be distracted by. A beautiful sunset. An amazing view of the city. But a pilot will tell you that they don’t see any of that. They only see the numbers at the end of the runway. Other than the glide slope (the angle of descent) and airspeed, a pilot will see nothing else but the numbers he/she is aiming for. Check out this short video of a landing I did recently in Victoria during a strong cross-wind (one of the most challenging types of landings)… During the entire sequence on a beautifully sunny day, all that mattered were the numbers at the end of the runway…
When you are looking at your day and the stuff you could do that would make the biggest impact, what are they? What are the numbers at the end of the runway that you are focusing on?
Robert Murray is a Vancouver, BC based Business Strategy Consultant, #1 Best Selling Author, International Keynote Speaker, and TEC Top Speaker of the Year for 2018. For further advice, insight and inspiration on how to unlock your inner leader, connect with Robert on LinkedIn.
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