Blog · Feb 18, 2015

Improving Business Performance – Focus on what’s Important

Advice on improving business performance

People in business are incredibly busy these days – simply doing the work that’s in front of them. We all have so many emails, phone calls, meetings and recurring tasks to complete every single day that it can be difficult to focus on what’s important – to concentrate on the tasks that move us closer to our goals.
Many of us don’t have clarity on what we’re actually trying to achieve. If you don’t have clarity on your ultimate goal, how can you decide what’s important? In the video above, Ben explains what steps you need to take to achieve clarity about  your goals and to use this to improve your performance every single day.

Without clarity you can’t perform at your best

How clear were you on what you had to achieve when you came to work this morning? We often arrive with a clear idea of what’s important to achieve, but then get overwhelmed within minutes by what appears in front of us. The day becomes a constant struggle to keep our heads above water.

In order to be truly successful, you need to be able to prioritise effectively. If not, you’ll spend every day at work battling against a huge list of tasks that never seems to become any smaller. Effective leaders delegate and, in some cases, decide which tasks aren’t worth doing at all. In order to make the correct decisions you need to understand your objectives. You need an effective benchmark to help you decide which tasks are worth doing.


How to achieve clarity

One of the best ways to achieve this clarity is to have a question you can ask yourself before you begin any task – a question that helps you to decide whether it’s important or not. For Ben and the team that won the Olympic gold medal in 2000, that question was “Will It Make The Boat Go Faster?”. We’ve helped businesses of all sizes come up with a variety of Crazy goals, and their corresponding challenging question, that helps them to focus on performance. Whether the Crazy goal is to double their turnover in five years or to be recommended by everyone it gives everyone in the business real clarity on what they’re doing every day, and how it contributes to the business’ success.

Improve your performance right now

This is an action you can perform right now to improve your performance. Take a look at your diary, or your to-do list, and consider every task that you’re scheduled to do for the rest of the day. Ask yourself how doing each task will improve your performance and move you closer to your goals. If you can’t come up with an answer then consider whether you can delegate or delay the task, or even not do it all. Being efficient is the key to improving your performance. You can only be truly efficient if you understand the value of everything you do.

In our next article we’ll cover why, ironically, focusing on your performance, rather than results, will take you closer to the results you desire.

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