— September 17, 2019
(September 20, 2019) I wrote a post about how to boost your executive effectiveness for yourself and others by assessing your decision-making with time tracking. Since decision-making is the foundation of leadership & management effectiveness, I wanted to add another easy, fun tool to use to improve decision-making while staying focused.
In fact I used it myself (September 20, 2019). It helped me address a looming decision-making weakness as I transition to the next chapter in my business.
Like the time tracking map, this tool is also visual…but I think this is a tab bit cooler.
Improve your focus, decision-making, productivity and results by using a bullseye. That’s right, use a color coded bullseye to chart out your priorities so you can maintain focus on what matters most (as I said in (September 20, 2019)’s post – keep the main thing the main thing).
There is real value in working with color. It creates and improves visual memory because it heightens stimulation of the subconscious and the “right brain”. Coding priorities in color also helps with team collaboration both onsite and remote.
And though I like using a bullseye, the concept of using color to track priorities to stay focused can be used in a variety of ways. The bullseye, however, is good to use because many already have in mind what it is, what it looks like and what it means, so there’s a short learning curve for use.
If someone has ever played darts. One thing you learn is how to do create “laser focus”…and hitting the yellow is ultimately satisfying and where the win occurs! Hitting the other colors just doesn’t feel the same!
That’s exactly the experience you want to replicate when using the bullseye to achieve results. The greatest satisfaction comes in measuring the wish, the desire to the result.
I particularly like working with the one to the above because it only has 5 levels or layers of options. If you get too many layers, it becomes confusing and can defeat the purpose of its use.
The prioritizing code can be used either inner to outer or outer to inner. I use it as follows: Yellow-#1 Priority, outcome or “targeted” result(s), Red #2, Blue #3, Black #4 and White #5.
When planning so the following:
1> Determine what targets (results) you want to hit
2> What activity would be required to do so
> And their rated priority
Plot all this on the bullseye. This very activity will help bring clarity – leading your mind out of any fog and into a clear visual path to the outcomes you want.
At the end of each day or week, match your activity to what you charted. Daily is best.
Here’s What Happen to Me
I’d determined on Monday the key activity and outcomes I needed to do for the week. It’s now Wednesday. I had an action item for a client before a webinar on Thursday to find a unique, exclusive piece of content to use as a giveaway. Rather than create something new, I began looking through the archives of dormit, older blogs.
One blog I’d not thought about for quite some time was a career coaching, individual contributor blog. As I scanned the content, I thought to myself, “Man, this stuff is really good. I should be sharing it. It could be helping a lot of people. Hum…maybe I should reactivate this aspect of my business and do something with individual contributors again.”
So I spent some time updating the site and sharing a post on Twitter. Later in the day, I was working on something else and this question came to me, “Why did you do that? You spent time on something that’s not relevant to what you need to be working on right now. Do you really have the time and capacity to launch something new in the midst of the goals you’re working on right now?” The answer was no.
So I asked myself, “Well, why did you do that?” My answer: “Because it’s another way of making money and I don’t want to leave any money on the table.”
This thinking is chronic among entrepreneurs and leaders with a large scope of responsibility. They/we try and do too much (I have lots of ideas!!!)…or there are huge, overwhelming demands. So we don’t gain momentum on anything, experience low grade revenue generation (or productivity) and start chasing the next shiny new object or turn to the next idea…all of which produces a perpetual, discouragement cycle.
We hop on the hamster wheel of crazy and exhausted…and our once excited passions start shriveling up like a grape under a hot California sun.
When taking a moment to examine my thinking, I realized (and this is not the first time, but a pattern), that the “don’t want to leave money on the table” thinking is a symptom of fear. Fear that what I’ve planned for now won’t produce the results I want.
The irony? If I don’t stay focused…in fact laser focused on my current plan, I won’t. Focus produces fruit. The luscious grape, not the shriveled up raisin.
Focus is a critical “human resource. It’s business currency. It’s priceless in an age of tugging technology and information overload.
One final note. That mid-afternoon prompting came from my subconscious. It’s useful to know that one of the best coaches you have is your subconscious…and it’s free! Pay attention to its promptings. Take time to listen to them. Give them the consideration they deserve. They are there to help you achieve your deepest desires.