Illustration by MK

Focus means not getting distracted from your main objectives. Execution means getting things done – the things you need to get done.

Squirrels are Everywhere

Distractions which make focus and execution hard are common in today’s business world.

People have personal lives which can be distracting. They must juggle the competing demands of work and family. They must think about their future. And of course, we all need to watch that video a friend just sent.

Companies can get distracted too. By some big world event. Or some exciting new business opportunity.

That’s where squirrels come in. Distractions are like squirrels.

Have you ever noticed what happens when a squirrel runs across your yard? All eyes follow it, your dog chases it, and everybody stops to see what happens.

What was that, our brain asks? A squirrel? Did it go up that tree? Is it dangerous? Will the dog catch it?

When a squirrel zips by, focus and execution goes right out the window. In the business world, squirrels are also known as ‘bright shiny objects.’

But if you can learn to ignore squirrels, you’ll be better able to succeed in business and in life.

And if the leaders of your company do a great job explaining what’s important, versus what’s a distraction (squirrel!), they’ll create a winning culture.

P.S.: By the way, it’s not the squirrels fault – the world’s just full of them!

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