Focus on One Thing at a Time
Though not necessarily only one goal at a time. There is much wisdom in simultaneous work, but that’s not the same as simultaneous focus (focusi? focuses? foci?). Even computers with multiple logical cores focus on single task at a time.
More on that another time. For now, we’re focused on focus.
To Get Your Result, Narrow Your Focus
To become the influential leader you want to be, you need to have a strong, unmuddled message.
To become the trusted authority you want to be, you need to have a breadth of knowledge in your field that surpasses anything average.
To become the successful business owner you want to be, you need to do everything possible to build, promote, and expand your business.
To become the independent creative you want to be, you need to pursue your art and the art of making money from it with something like fanaticism.
Diversification is a Great Idea, Later
Diversification (like innovation and synergy) is one of those words that has become mostly meaningless due to overuse in business jargon-y publications.
It’s still a smart strategy for small and large businesses alike. It means: spread out your risks. Invest in more than one product or service or holding so that if one goes down, you’ve still got something else. You can rebuild from what’s left. You won’t be totally demolished.
But when you’re building your __________ (expertise, credentials, authority, leadership, product, brand, portfolio, renown), the key is becoming intently, narrowly, fanatically focused on what you’re building. To the exclusion of other things that might also seem nice, or somehow related to what you’re doing. Did you hear that?
To the exclusion of…
That Means You Have to Say No
To neat-o offers and peachy-keen opportunities that don’t fit into your focus. In the building stage, (the one you’re in now, remember?) you are putting in a foundation. It needs to be solid. It needs to be structured. It needs to be fitted together or it will fall apart.
Later, You’ll Have Options
Later, once you’ve established yourself, built your structure, made your name, you can diversify. You can expand. You can find those related opportunities, those intriguing offers (and don’t worry, they’ll come flooding in) and take them.
Just don’t get it out of order. Focus on one result at a time. Be narrow. Get it right and built it strong the first time, and then it will be strong enough to support all that other stuff that comes later.