A Matter of Executive Focus

Where are you focused right now?

It’s a rather simple question that opens up a complex issue for many of today’s global executives.

Your focus as a leader is uniquely your own. But it’s also the subject of others’ attention as they look for cues to what motivates you, how and with whom you’re spending your time, and which levers you’re pulling to deliver bottom-line results for the organisation.

In many ways, your focus reveals your motivation and priorities. Your focus is the outward expression of your personal compass, reflecting what you care about and why. And it is also something that others will compete for, for the good of the enterprise but also, in some cases, to advance their own agenda with you.

The matter of executive focus is important as much today because of what it says about you as a global leader, but also because of how it constitutes an increasingly vital element of self-discipline, preparedness and commitment to the most strategic of business objectives.

Learning to focus isn’t easy, particularly in an age when distractions seem to mount in many new ways.

It’s true, honing your own skill to keep the unimportant from dictating your time and attention takes time and the recognition that you may have to say “No thanks” or “I’ll have one of my team follow up with you on that” more than you’d really like.
The payoff on developing your ability to steer your intellect and organisational resources in the right direction is immense. You may find yourself less consumed by all the demands on your time because you will have learned how to filter what’s most deserving of your attention.

You may also realise that your ability to dig in and give vital priorities the attention they require has the effect of bringing some things beyond your control into better focus. Investing more deeply in your top priorities may just provide the clarity – and conviction – it takes to make a difficult decision.

The higher up you rise in the corporate ranks, the more essential it is for you to devote as much as yourself to the most critical deliverables. After all, executive teams and boards of directors aren’t as patient as they used to be.

There’s a lot riding on your ability to focus. And nothing can derail an executive career quite like a perceived lack of focus.

So go ahead. Give it everything you’ve got. And don't let anything stand in your way. Not even your own lack of focus and disciplined commitment to get things done.

Copyright © TRANSEARCH International 2015

 

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