Activity driven versus Objective driven. Same concept? Difference in semantics? This is a concept that I feel is a key issue in the “focus” in many consultants – and really in many business professionals in general.
I frequently find that most people work very hard. Obviously there are many exceptions to this. However, many people do work long hours, try very hard, and have their heart in the right place. Sometimes just working hard is enough to succeed. However, many times these people find themselves being frustrated by their lack of success – whether they feel they are the cause or not. “I’ve been working so hard on this project. I worked on this for 16 hours yesterday …”
This is where the phrase “learn to work smarter” comes into play. In today’s competitive world, hard work unfortunately won’t always guarantee success. Simply putting in a large number of hours does not excuse not completing your objectives. We need to work smarter.
I feel the first step in this transformation is to be Objective driven. It’s actually a very simple concept – define your success based on the agreed upon objectives – not based on how hard your trying. It still surprises me how often people do not take the time to be absolutely clear on the objectives of your task – and then remain focused on them. Another common saying – “if you don’t know where you’re going, you won’t know when you’ve arrived”. Plus you probably won’t even get there.
The importance of “Focus” cannot be understated. Staying focused on the deliverables – i.e. the agreed upon Objectives, is critical to success – it’s also upon what we are usually evaluated. If you just work hard and don’t reach your objectives, you’ll be viewed as “someone who works very hard, but ultimately does not get the job done.” Ouch.
VIA Board Member