I can see it now: In the coming weeks, the Internet will be flooded with “5 Steps to Set Your 2014 in Order,” “Check Your Goals from 2013 to Springboard into 2014,” and a myriad of other titles to grab your eye.
But what I want to speak about is not an end-of-year thing, but something I have been focusing on year round. It is a daily way of being that allows us to hit our goals: fixation.
I read about this concept in a Fast Company article about Pharrell Williams this month and it struck me, as that was a very clear word for a concept that I was communicating to my team. Fixation.
In this world where technology is shifting and the rules bend at a minute’s notice, we seem to believe that technology is allowing us to accomplish more. However, in many cases I see more fractured work because of attempted multi-tasking. I believe we all accomplish more when we fixate on something so our whole attention allows us to accomplish more in less time.
As many businesses close out another year, many managers will panic because they need to hit their end-of-year goals. So, they push their teams to do more at a quicker pace and to do whatever they have to so that when they hit that finish line, they can say they hit their goals.
Along the way there are mistakes, there is guesswork and there is so much stress. And once it is all over, there is no idea how to repeat this success.
To these managers I ask- what were you fixated on? Was it the end result or the execution of process? Is it reality or the fun house mirror where things look the way you want them to depending on where you stand?
Stop trying to find the quick five steps to solve problems. Please change your focus from multi-tasking or else another year will pass where goals are not met. I know training is not flashy or trendy; it is not the new cool app or social platform. But if your team does not know how to fixate on what is right in front of them, then your team will continue to produce the same stressed results that may have diminishing returns.
What you have to fixate on daily is how to implement, teach, train and follow up.
My advice to all businesses for 2014 and beyond is that the most important positions in your business will be your trainers; it will be the person who is fixated on making sure your team is pushing itself with committed effort each and every day.
If you are not embracing this in the coming year you will fall behind. Things move quickly and if your team is not nimble and trained well, the game will pass them by.
Even as I write this article, I am pulled by distractions both of my own making and of my team, and I have to fight to stay focused. It is not easy but I am aware of the draw of technology and fragmented work. If I am open to the work, everything slows down and I can see what to do.
Let the work come to you. Be fixated on what is in front of you and by the end of next year, there will be no need to search for “5 Quick Fixes,” because others will be asking you how you accomplished so much.