Maddie shot into the centre of the arena on her makeshift body board. Fully armoured with helmet, elbow and kneepads she sailed inches off the ground towards the centre where an array of coloured balls were. Never had she imagined that she would be a human hungry hippo, but here she was. So many coloured balls; So many competitors also heading towards her. She knew her focus - blue balls, but before she had the chance to lower her bucket on some, like a steam train Casper, her nemesis thundered into her from the side. She just needed to focus. . . ignore the distractions. Just get the blue balls.
In a less dramatic fashion we often face that same tension. There is a job to do but where do I start? You sit there and stare blankly at the list of jobs. You know you have time available, but you just don’t seem to get things done and your mind just seems to jump from one thing to the next and everything that comes in seems to want to demand your attention more than the last thing.
How do you prioritise?
How do you get some control and purpose back?
What gets you Execution Focus?
3 simple steps help us gain control and get things done.
Remind yourself of the purpose you have. What is your ‘why’? This helps shape your ‘what’ and the priority for you.
What is the priority at this point? As I write this we are in the midst of the Coronavirus lockdown. Is it to help the business survive? Is it to support your customers to create loyalty as we come out of this? What will make the biggest difference to you now? What one or two things do I need to focus on now for the greatest impact. Chris McChesny, in his book ‘4 Disciplines of Execution’ says that the 1st discipline is to ‘Focus on the Wildly Important’. What thing will have the greatest impact for you if you focused on it?
So, what are your ‘blue balls’, the thing that you have to focus on? Chris McChesny suggests that execution discipline 2 is to ‘Act on the Lead Measure’. By this he means act on the thing that will actually make the difference. For example, if you want to raise your profile on social media, you don’t just count the likes, you count the thing that makes the difference to getting the likes eg how many quality posts you make or how many quality videos you produce to go out.
For Everyday Leader at this time, our purpose remains the same.
We have two priorities.
Priority – 1. To inspire people at this time; 2) Provide online coaching & training services that people need
Pinpoint – 1. Produce more videos and blogs to help; 2) Online Zoom coaching and training for clients
Look at your ‘to do’ list with this now in mind. Allocate 60% of your time to your priority and activities that pinpoint it and do that first. Other stuff that needs doing gets the 40%. Everything that fits the Purpose & Priority becomes your pinpoint focus.
Maybe colour code your list to show priority 1, priority 2 and low priority.
Consider the times of day that work best for particular task
Break up heavy tasks with some easier to tick off ones
Start the day with a priority task
The key thing though is not to see the list as a sea of balls. Prioritise your ‘blue balls’, the items that help you win the game at this time.