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Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Where Is Your Focus?

One of my favorite clients had a breakthrough meeting last week. He was getting all caught up in scoring his work, and what his management thought of him, and how he should report his results.

Finally he said, “I'm going to rant for just a minute, and then I'm going back to focusing on production.” He did and he was.

And truly he was better. He refocused on serving customers and building an infrastructure to improve those interactions. This week he is starting to get some speed up.

How did he get so bent?

His boss kept asking him questions about when he thought money was coming in. He had already reported, but the boss thought maybe something had changed.

He was asked to use marketing for support. On one project they are 120 days late with no prospect for completion and on the new opportunity the junior marketing person who answered the phone told him, “No client should ask for that.”

He is getting rumors about a compensation change, which was taking a lot of his conscious thought, although we determined it wouldn't change his work pattern.

He was spending so much time in internally focused meetings, he was developing a dream to get paid for work he wasn't doing, because he learned someone else was doing that.

Look, in every organization there are a lot of people gaming the internal system. The whole point of Management By Objectives is to whine and limp until you convince some staffer to let you set easy objectives.

But if the organization is going to succeed, if your job is going to be worth doing, you're going to need to do something that matters. And in case after case that will involve being measured by customers.

Those customers are the future of your organization and your career. The guys making noise inside are temporary.

Are you keeping outside or inside focus?

Drafted in LibreOffice 3.3 I like it a lot!
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