You are currently viewing Staying focused is key to accomplishing goals
Brent Knight, CSP; President of ISS, Inc.

It is a well-known fact that focus is key to accomplishing goals. It is also clear that maintaining focus can be very challenging.

What is focus? Focus is a state or condition permitting clear perception or understanding. This is the definition according to Merriam-Webster. Focus is the ability to complete a task without distraction or regardless of distraction. Sure, sometimes this is easier said than done.

During a normal workday, we have nothing but distractions. It could be someone walking into our office, a call that pulls you away, or the call of social media and emails. Regardless, distractions are the enemy of focus and can hijack the ability to get important things accomplished.

We know that we have things that require our focus, and we also know that we are going to be challenged with distraction, so what is the key to maintaining focus? It is only my opinion, but I would say that maintaining focus requires a level of discipline. For me, this means blocking out my schedule for a specific task or project that requires focus. Examples could be virtual meetings or calls, the preparation of a complicated proposal, reviewing a contract or insurance policy, or working on strategic objectives. This means shutting down my email, muting my phone, closing my door, and committing to the focus necessary to complete the objective.

I think that for many of us, the (FOMO) fear of missing out on things that come up during the day can threaten focus. I know that this is a challenge for me, but using discipline and compartmentalizing your schedule will help to accomplish both goals, getting the key tasks done and keeping up with the daily work that comes to you.

In business, this might be one of the most important differentiators between great leaders and highly effective people. They have the discipline that is needed to maintain focus. They often also possess the ability to be present and to ignore distractions that do not add value to their job or the company as a whole.

I would like to say that this process is easy, but it isn’t. It is hard and requires much practice and as mentioned, discipline. Think about it and give it a try. The results can be very rewarding.