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Scattered and Smothered vs. The Important Few Things

One of the biggest challenges we have today isn’t a dearth of ideas, apps and experts; it’s the ability for a business owner or leader to select a very few things to implement for the biggest impact, and then execute well on those few things.  Entrepreneurs do not have unlimited time, money or other resources to spend scattered across too many ideas, so the real challenge is to make time to decide what top three things will move your business forward and master those. Knowledge isn’t power unless you can activate it to achieve your priorities. 

If you are feeling scattered and smothered and potentially covered (thank you, Waffle House, for this hash brown metaphor), it’s time to develop a system to create calm, remove distractions and create focus. Here are a few tips to consider:

  • Even if it’s taken a village to get you to where you are today, working with one coach or mentor at a time allows you to focus. Knowing when to access other points of view is an important distinction when leveraging advice and guidance, and too many ideas muddy your own good decision-making abilities.
  • More isn’t always better. More reading, more work on your plate, more projects for your team – more, more, more only leads to more distraction and less execution, which can make you feel overwhelmed and smothered. Those most successful in business actually discipline themselves every day to focus on the important few.
  • Accept your limited resources, including time, money and people, and work with what you have. Don’t waste resources on something that isn’t going to give you a return toward your business goals.
  • Don’t have goals for your business? Create them and be clear what the return is on any money you are spending, on assignments you are giving to others, and on decisions you are making in the moment. Better yet, don’t make a big decision in the moment. Make time for that decision to see if it fits with your reality of limited resources.
  • Know the best way to grow your business. Isolating yourself in your office won’t build business or create revenue. Identify the top three ways for reaching your target audience and be sure that you are working in those three spaces to build business. Here’s a hint: Social media isn’t usually in the top three, but it can support what you are doing face-to-face, building relationships and generating real-time buzz for your products and services.  Even today, people like to connect with others through speaking, meeting and sharing ideas in a live environment.

Making deliberate choices about how you will spend your valuable time and money, and not being distracted by the need to do more will enable you to master the effective few things that will grow your business, and also set you up to be more available to real opportunity that crosses your path.