Is It Time to Switch Your Focus?

focus afarI’ve been playing a financial literacy game by MindBlown Labs on my phone. The concept is fairly simple: every “day” you can choose to focus on earning money, gaining reputation, or increasing your skills. At the end of the day, your income is compared to your expenses and you either get to add money to your account (yay!) or see your savings dwindle (boo!).

The first few times I played the game, I ended up bankrupt. I had been trying hard to focus on earning money, and each time, that strategy failed. I finally tried a new strategy: spend more time increasing my skills, even if it meant losing money short-term. What do you know?! That worked! Increased skills meant promotions and pay raises, which meant more money on the days I then focused on earning money. My account started to stay safely in the black and then even grow!

What does this game have to do with real life? Well, sometimes in our businesses, we need to be willing to switch our focus also. We sometimes get our blinders on and see only the work (and our need to work hard), and we don’t realize that there could be a better way long-term. If we are willing to take time to learn new skills, or new methods, there is usually a cost short-term, but the rewards start to manifest soon enough.

For example, companies that implement new project management software, such as the Spitfire Project Management System, go through a period of interruption. Time must be spent in configuration and then training. So there is a temptation to always think, “we don’t have time for that now.” Companies that think that way continue to work hard…harder than necessary. Companies that do “go live” on the new system soon start to see the benefits in time and money saved. Being willing to sacrifice some time and money for a short period means they can jump to the next level of project management. They can pull ahead!

Yes, it can be a little scary and it seems counter-intuitive. (Every time I ended up with negative income in the game, I just wanted to work harder!) But we’ve all heard the saying, “work smarter, not harder,” and taking the time to investigate, choose, acquire and implement a comprehensive project management system is a way to work smarter.

If you are ready to switch your focus and up your game, you can start by asking for a free demo. Then keep thinking of the long-term rewards.