There’s a term to describe tempting opportunities outside of an organization’s core competencies: “Shiny Things.”
Like sparkling diamonds or the flashing lights of fame, these opportunities beckon. Shiny things lure even the most rational leadership teams into poor strategic choices with real implications. When confronted with a new opportunity -- a shiny thing -- you’ll need to ask if it is a “core” or is it a “lure”?
Harry Beckwith says, “people don’t lead, purposes do.”
Recently, I worked with a client who became a firm believer in this statement. He is the son who inherited a successful 20-year-old family business and is now struggling to pay the bills. He has been drifting away from the company’s core business and has become distracted.
During a conversation we were having, I asked, “Why do you do what you do?”
“I do it for the money!” he replied.
No one cares what you do.
I know this seems a bit harsh but it is a reality. There are many other companies that do what you do and can fulfill the need your company currently fills.
But can they do it HOW you do it?
Are you a hedgehog or a fox in business? ’The Hedgehog and the Fox’ by Isaiah Berlin describes how the world can be divided into two types. The wily fox is cunning and knows many things, using various complex strategies to attack the hedgehog. Whereas the hedgehog is single-minded and only knows one big thing- rolling up into a perfect sphere of sharp spikes to defend itself against the fox. Surprisingly, the stubborn hedgehog always wins despite the many different tactics the crafty fox uses.