7/20/11

The Challenge of Focus: Brand Change (Part 6)


There is a large gathering made up of people in the industry, media and curious bystanders. The smoke is very thick and the air is hot. The crowd seems to shift whenever there is a new rumor, potential leak or even something said in humor that is given weight as all seek the source of the fire. Is there a sale? Who is the buyer? When will this take place? When will we know? Has the deal been blown?

Each question and rumor gets attention and gains importance as the story mutates when it is shared one to another.

So, why are you in the crowd getting caught up in the noise and lost in the smoke? It is human nature – curiosity, a need to know, hope, fear, concern and desire. All compelling but very hard to ignore and a true challenge, as it may distract you from focusing on what is important to your business.

If you are in charge and potentially in control, you know the location of the fire and you are at the scene. If you are in the smoke, you cannot change what will happen. The challenge of focus is keeping a firm hand on the rudder of what is important and immediate in our own businesses in spite of all of the distractions available in times of change. Brand change brings great distractions, not just because of the play on the imagination, but more so because it is at least a part of our identity.

How do you stay focused?
  1. Limit the number of times you check sources to see if it happened.
  2. Put a time limit on the amount of time you will invest in conversations regarding the potential brand change.
  3. Task yourself and the leadership of your company to have three key priorities to accomplish daily and review progress at end of the day.
  4. Write a “white” announcement that you can drop the change announcement into when the announcement is made.
  5. Understand that you must stay in control of what you can change, impact or lead.

The challenge of focus is a great test to the strength of leadership and critically important in times of change and abundant rumors. Your staff and all associated with you will appreciate the difference your focus and leadership will make to the bottom line. The news of the announcement will be made whether you are watching or not. Stay focused.

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