Thursday, March 1, 2012

As The Business Owner/Manager, What Do You Focus On?

When I was a kid, I used to play games with the cracks (I think the correct term is expansion joints) in the sidewalk, trying not to step on them, always missing them. It was challenging sometimes, and the main problem is I couldn't see what was ahead of me because I was looking down focused on the cracks and where I was in relation to them.

I see a number of owners and/or executive managers doing this, including some larger businesses doing $20 to $30 million in revenue. They have a tendency to go from problem to problem without any consistent resolve, lose key employees due to knee-jerk reactions, or poor decisions, and such. I am absolutely convinced that this is mostly a lack of vision, or rather a misplaced focus.

I've studied business leaders and business most of my life and every one of those leaders had what others call vision, and what they mean by that is that the key leader is five, ten, even fifty years down the road with where they can "see" the company and/or products and services heading. Often, they are called visionaries because they seem to see the future before most of us.

What it comes down to from all of my study and personal experience as well is seeing what the possibilities are and how that might play out in a positive light. That is what a visionary is doing. They know because their focus is out in front.

When I first learned how to drive, my dad said to "keep my eyes on the horizon." When I learned how to fly an airplane it was all about keeping my eyes on the horizon. That is exactly where a business leaders eyes need to be--on the horizon.

With your eyes on the horizon, your peripheral vision cannot help to see what is going on around you, so you know what is going on in the here and now, and at the same time seeing the end result, or at least, a future end result that is appealing and enticing. Though your peripheral vision sees what is going on around you, that is NOT your focus--your focus is on the horizon.

As a business leader, one needs to become an expert at delegation in order to keep them uncluttered enough to keep their focus where it absolutely NEEDS to be: On the horizon!

If you are a business owner, executive manager or leader, where is your focus?

No comments: