The devil is in the detail
The devil is in the detail and if you don’t pay enough attention, things can quickly go wrong.
I was reminded of this recently when I was out walking Enzo, my dog, early one morning. It was around dawn and the sun was beginning to peak over the horizon, the birds were singing their hearts out. My most favourite time of the day.
A bad night’s sleep
However, on that particular day I had not had the best night’s sleep, and as I stepped over fallen trees, navigated tree roots and trod paths I have been over many times over the years, I felt a little fuzzy and sleepy. But then I tripped, just a little, I didn’t stumble or fall. I paid zero attention and carried on until it happened again, this time I registered it and walked a little more carefully. But after a while I went back to walking on ‘auto pilot’.
The third time it happened it was a big stumble and I thought I was going to fall. This time I stopped in my tracks. Took stock of my walk so far, recalled the two times I had not paid attention when tripping and so had not focused on adjusting what I was doing.
Why it matters
Why did it really matter to me? Well two years ago I did the exact same thing only on that occasion I took a fall and broke a rib in the process. I did not want a repeat of that for sure.
In business, as in life. It is easy to miss the warning signs that causes us challenge that may begin small, but over a period of time can become big if not addressed. For instance it is easy to slip into the same sales ‘auto pilot’ when talking to a prospective customer. I have done it over the years. What I noticed on those occasions is that when I looked back at my success rate in moving those prospects on towards a sale and I had much less success. Where I adjusted my ‘pitch’ to be really listening to the customer – and there’s no surprise here - I progressed much faster.
Take time to look
What was important was that I had taken time to look at what was happening, use the data to guide me and adjust what I was doing. Whenever I look back on the week I take just a little time to look at where I was missing the signals to adjust my course and think how I might change this. I also take the time to celebrate the small successes too, after all life has to be a balance and its easy to forget the many things that go well.
I am really looking forward to speaking with many of you over the coming weeks as we start our Kick Offs around the world and am looking forward to hearing how things are going for you.
In the meantime keep safe and well.