Maybe it’s the fact that it’s a new year….and a new DECADE to boot….or maybe the excess amount of holiday food and eggnog has induced some sort of reflective coma-haze that gives me perspective….but lately I’m thinking that folks are getting an overdose of advice that’s more or less eye-ball catching and self-serving and not enough about what will really help them make something of themselves.
I see eyebrows going up. I’m not trying to come off as some sort of “Mr. Know It All”. Let me tell you what gives me that impression and admit that maybe I’ve just seen one too many attention-getting headlines that, while entertaining, don’t really add a whole lot of value for business readers.
This may get some folks upset, but I really don’t think that “Christmas was destroyed by Corporate America” or “Every Company should be shaking in their boots over Wikileaks”, or “Generation Y is a superior race of superhuman worker bees” or “Tweeting 60 times a day will save your business and career.” All of them are recent headlines in news stories, believe it or not.
The thing is, none of this has value for business readers because business isn’t about you.
It’s also not about your career, your generation, your stress, your race, your gender, your religion, your holiday beliefs, your family, your values, your childhood influences or some psychopathic misfit’s childish attempt at getting attention by disrupting the grown-up world’s business.
Business is simple. Business is about one thing. Business.
Now you may think that such a statement is counterintuitive, but I think that if you want to be successful in the real world, you have to stop thinking about yourself and, instead, focus on the business.
In fact, the closer you come to the proverbial “where the rubber meets the road,” the more successful you’ll be.
I perused a variety of representing articles to come up with the kind of decision-making that successful people spend their work days focused on, i.e. where the rubber meets the road: It was insightful, but truly not anything that we all aren’t aware of.
- Figuring out what to do when your product isn’t going to meet customer expectations or the specs you promoted.
- Deciding how many and which people to lay off.
- Knowing what to do when the customer that accounts for 14 percent of the company’s revenue tells you they are cutting its forecast in half.
- Making tradeoffs between cost and features of a new product, without having enough information to know which will matter most to customers.
- Determining how to respond when a competitor has just launched a leapfrog product and you didn’t see it coming.
If you’re being selfish and self-centered, or obsessing over your career , the simple truth is that you’re not going to get far in business. Nobody does with that mindset. Do you think great entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Andy Grove, or Michael Dell were thinking of themselves or their careers when they were building their companies?
I’ll tell you what I agonized over during the 30-something years I’ve worked in corporate America: Meeting my goals. Exceeding my customer’s expectations. Pulling off a wildly successful product launch with a fraction of my competitor’s budget.
Sure, I sometimes complained about my bosses, with a variety of colorful expletives, but I spent more time trying to figure out how to complement his weaknesses so we could all be successful. I’ve always focused on how to be the best at what I was paid to do. Whether I was being paid or paying myself. Period.
God knows, we all need to blow off some steam sometimes….and I’m in no position to tell you where and how to get your online entertainment. But if you really look at all the rhetoric that’s out there in the blogosphere, it’s very likely you’re going to get the wrong impression about what really matters in the business world..
What really matters in business … is business. Business is simple. Business is about one thing. Business.
And the closer you get to impacting the business directly, the more visible you’ll become, the more opportunities will arise, and the more successful you’ll be. Simple.
Ok..thanks for reading. Back to the business at hand.