Keep Your Eyes on the Road: Using Your Core Focus to Keep Your Business on Track
Imagine driving on a highway you’ve never been on before. Preferably you’re driving a convertible and the views are breathtaking. In this scenario, it’s unlikely you’ll notice the guardrails. However, the guardrails are almost invisibly keeping you on track, guiding you safely and efficiently to your desired destination. In your business, your Core Focus™ functions the same way.
Your company is the vehicle and your Core Focus is the guardrail for your journey; keeping you moving forward, allowing you to focus on what you do best.
Why Core Focus Matters
Quite simply, your Core Focus helps you determine what to say yes and no to as opportunities continue to present themselves. As the guardrail, it helps you to avoid driving off-course when distracted by a shiny object – read “irresistible opportunity.” Once you determine your Core Focus, it is your filtering mechanism for making decisions. It is your “sweet spot” in your business. If a new opportunity does not fit your sweet spot, you must say no – regardless of how attractive it seems.
One of my current clients avoided a disaster by using their Core Focus to turn down a new client. Although it offered a lot of potential revenue, the client work was not aligned with their Core Focus. If this client were to work with that client, the client would have caused internal problems with resource allocation and support. As opportunistic entrepreneurs, these situations occur all of the time and it is up to the leadership team to refer to the Core Focus, and when appropriate, say “no” to any opportunity that doesn’t fit.
In addition to being the guardrails to your long term goals, which all your systems and processes serve, your Core Focus inspires and motivates your entire company. By definition, it is why you do what you do coupled with what you have superior skill to do. Adhering to this not only makes you more successful with the clients you have, but it also helps you focus and attract the right clients. Without your Core Focus, you can’t maximize the opportunity you offer the marketplace and you’ll end up wasting time, energy, and money chasing opportunities you’re not uniquely gifted to serve.
How to Define Core Focus
Defining your Core Focus is an exercise for your leadership team, and it is best to set aside a few hours offsite for discussion and debate. To start this process, ask the following two questions:
- What is our reason for being? In EOS®, this is defined as the purpose/cause/passion of your business; the why you do what you do. It should not be clear what business you are in from this statement; it is about a purpose larger than money or product. An example of a great Core Focus, is one from my client, Victors Roofing. Their Purpose reads: “Under our roof, we take care of people.”
- What is our niche? This question helps you determine what you do better than anyone else and defines your “sweet spot.” Again, Victors Roofing keeps it clear and simple, their niche: “Roofing.”
Once everyone on the leadership team has had a chance to ponder the questions, begin sharing answers. Don’t get discouraged if it takes some time to uncover the answers; this is normal and together your team will identify what truly makes your company special. Your guardrails will be set to guide you on your dream highway!
Use your Core Focus to keep doing what you do best. Use it as guardrails to stay on track with where you are going and reinforce it every quarter during your State of the Company address. Stick to your Core Focus and enjoy the ride as you speed past your competition!
- Watch EOS Founder Gino Wickman describe the 8 Questions Your Leadership Team Should Answer to help you clarify your company vision
- Download a copy of 20+ EOS Terms Your Employees Need to Know to help your team understand key EOS concepts and terms.
- Request a free 90-Minute Meeting with an EOS Implementer to get a clear picture of what it looks like to run your company on EOS.