Focus on the Big Picture

By Reuben Buchanan, Managing Director – Axstra Capital Pty Ltd

In my experience, most business owners are far too focused on the day-to-day operation of their business and forget to focus on the big picture – the corporate strategy which will allow them to get to where they want to go.

No matter what industry you’ve decided to be in, chances are the earlier days will be the toughest and require most of your attention. In fact in the formative years, or during the growth phase of your business, rarely will the business be running without a significant degree of stress and uncertainty.

The best way I’ve found to deal with this is to focus on the big picture. If you focus on the nitty gritty, it can all become too hard. And it’s emotionally draining as well. You can often feel deflated about your business as you may be putting so much in with little tangible result.

So how do you remain focused on the big picture? It’s easier said than done. So here are some pointers:

  1. Get someone with solid business experience and big picture thinking to join your board as a non-executive director and meet with them every month or two. Make sure they understand what you long term objectives are and often it will aid in reminding you of where you need to go and how to stay on track. As a non-executive director, they are not actually working within the business. This will allow them to stay high level and not get caught up in the day-to-day operations of your business. And no company is too small for this. If you think your business is too small to have expert advice, then your thinking is too small to start with!
  2. Get a business mentor. This person is someone with “been there done that” experience. Pay them or somehow incentivize them to mentor you every few weeks or so. Mentoring is simple – you go to them with your problems for that week/fortnight/month and tell them about it. They then tell you how to fix it and you apply this advice! It’s no use having a mentor if you don’t apply their solutions. They can keep you motivated and heading in the right direction.
  3. Education. You need to keep learning about how other people are doing it both in your industry and others. So read business books, read success biographies (such as Richard Branson or Arnold Schwarzenegger), attend seminars, conferences and events that can help you improve your knowledge on business. You need to schedule into your diary to focus a minimum of 2 hrs a week to continuously build your knowledge.

I have met and interviewed many highly successful entrepreneurs and this is exactly what they do. So I know it works. If you apply at least 1 – let alone all – of the above pointers, it will go a long way to ensuring your business is successful. One thing is for certain, if you don’t lift your business thinking to a higher level, it will be almost impossible for you to reach your personal and/or financial business goals.

IMPORTANT: This information is general and should not be taken as specific advice. Readers should always seek their own professional advice. For more information, please email enquiries@axstra.com.au

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