Focus is much like the wind. If harnessed and channeled, the wind can create electricity, expedite the flight of an airplane or the movement of a ship and pump water from a well. You cannot stop the wind, change its intensity or at times destructive forces, but when harnessed, it is useful, productive and generates a limitless supply of focused energy.
Like the wind, you cannot stop focus. You, your peers, your workforce and associates are always focusing on something all of the time. But, you can harness and channel focus so it is engaged in what you want and generates the productivity and performance you desire.
In the movie Gone with the Wind, the last line of the prologue introducing the epic novel simply read: “A Civilization gone with the wind.” Is this what is happening everyday with your personal focus and that of your workforce? Focused thought tied together with action is the critical link when it comes to the forward movement of performance and productivity. If, like in the movie, your flow of focus is gone with the wind, it is important to take steps now to harness and channel your flow of focus because that is what yields productivity, performance and profitability. When gone with the wind, focus yields constant interruptions, distraction and self-destruction.
Two great examples of people who not only had great clarity of vision but also unwavering focus are Steve Jobs and Walt Disney. If you think about it, both were great innovators, both were engaged in creating a product that their customers didn’t know they needed or wanted and both employed laser focused on their ever expanding vision. Without the laser focus, their visions could not have become such enormous success realities.
Disney didn’t want to produce just another cartoon, build another merry-go-round or amusement park. His vision was to create an ultimate end-destination entertainment experience for children of all ages from toddler to senior – the happiest place on earth. And Jobs didn’t want to produce just another computer. He wanted more than the bite of an apple, he wanted to create communications links, systems and equipment that could be invisible assistants anticipating your every need while keeping you connected to everything, everywhere and everyone.
Jobs and Disney were innovators par excellence and their legacy speaks highly of their infinite creative genius and focus. Their focus wasn’t distracted with minutia, imperfection and partial solutions but rather honed and sharpened with laser accuracy. It was their intense focus that engaged their workforce allowing them to rise to the top with innovative product offerings through productivity, performance and profitability.
Understanding the Flow of Focus
Focus flows to and from many directions and is either engaged in productivity or distracted by unbridled chaos. Some common paths for the flow of focus are:
- the top down from leadership to the workforce
- the bottom up from the workforce to management
- the inside out company or leadership vision to the workforce
- the outside in suggestions and complaints from the workforce to the leadership
- worker to worker
- the physical workplace environment to the workforce
- external forces and events to leadership and the workforce
- personal communications and issues to individuals
Being aware of how focus flows in your workplace and personal life is the first step to harnessing and channeling it to increase productivity and performance.
Only when you realize how many ways focus can be distracted can you begin to develop a roadmap to the harnessing process so you can unleash it at your choosing and send it in the direction you want.
Once accomplished, you will be in possession of the same leadership secret weapon that Steve Jobs and Walt Disney unleashed and used so effectively. My next newsletter will feature some of the steps for harnessing and unleashing that flow of focus.
© Pat Heydlauff, all rights reserved 2012
Pat Heydlauff speaks from experience. She creates environments that engage and focus your workforce. She is the author of the forthcoming book, Engage, Unleash the Power of Focus and Feng Shui, So Easy a Child Can Do It and can be reached at www.Energy-by-Design.com or call: 561-408-2708.Share