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Don’t Take Your Eye Off The Ball

An operator of a business does not have time to nap or to take his or her eye off the ball when managing a business.

Years ago, I was sent to Fort Worth, Texas to visit my dad’s friend Ivan Miller.  He operated a very successful retail operation.  When Ivan picked me up at the airport in Dallas and on our drive to Fort Worth, he asked me how I liked my new “mistress.”  I was totally taken back by his question.  He had been at my wedding and he knew I was newly married.  What was Ivan thinking about to ask this question?  He looked over at me and then said: “You do not know what I mean.”  I was puzzled.  He exclaimed that I would soon understand.

After working alongside him during my visit and absorbing all his tactics and methods of handling the day-to-day of running his business, he drove me back to the airport.  He asked me the same question” “How do I like my ‘mistress?'”

I then realized what this savvy operator meant.

Managing a business is a 24 x 7 position.  There is no time to take your eyes off the ball–a business requires total dedication to keep focus on your plan to deliver the results that were established in the strategic planning process.

Owner Operator Can’t Take Eye Off the Ball

A Wall Street Journal article caught my eye which brings the lesson of management front and forward: “Target’s Pricey Social Lesson.” Last year Target posted on its website an announcement of the retailer’s bathroom policy allowing transgender people to use the bathrooms and fitting rooms corresponding to their gender. Normally such announcements should not have caused an uproar, but the sensitive nature of the matter caused much consternation with many of Target’s customers.  The announcement was not seen by the CEO or by an appropriate responsible team member.  Well, all “Hell” broke out with protests and calls for boycotts of the Target stores.

The CEO or appropriate team member should have had their eye on the ball and thought of what they were doing.  Running a business is a full-time job of managing all the details.  Whether you are an owner-operator or senior member, you must be attentive to all aspects of your business.  If you watch the details, the bigger picture will take care of itself.  The operating of a business is a detailed daily function to execute and deliver your strategy and vision.
Elanstrategic understands the development of the strategic plan and we pride ourselves on the EXECUTION of the plan.  We know that when executing, one must understand the minute details of the plan.