The Big Leadership Decision
TIME focus? Or ENERGY focus?
The infamous and highly successful NBA basketball coach, Phil Jackson, was once asked about how he won championships. Phil replied with three short words:
“I pay attention.”
High performance is always activated and sustained by the attention of leadership.
Professional drivers have learned that the car goes where the eyes go. They explain that as you ‘round the corner and see an accident, if you focus on the accident, you become the accident. The first move for the driver is not with the hands. The driver’s first move is to force their eyes (their attention) towards open space (where they want to go), and then the hands and the car automatically follow.
Leaders, in 2019 what will you pay attention to? What will you force your focus towards?
Personal and cultural leadership is always complex, so let’s start with one simple key decision that leaders can make to adjust their attention and heighten their focus.
As we travel North America working with hundreds of clients and their teams, we are noticing a trend that has an un-said, un-talked about undercurrent.
We are noticing that leaders tend to organize their conversations around two general focuses. We are calling these Time-Focussed Leadership and Energy-Focussed Leadership. Obviously, these two focuses are not exclusive, but we are observing that company structures tend to prioritize culture and conversations in one of these two directions.
I have been watching this trend with fascination for a long time. More and more leaders are moving their players (workers) away from the 9 to 5 (put in your time) cultural focus, and towards an energy/outcome/results focus prioritization.
Author Tony Schwartz believes that “Energy, not time, is the fundamental currency of high performance.” Scott Young elaborates on this concept with reference to the individual. I would like you to also think of this concept within the context of your team culture also as you read:
“Energy management, unlike time management, is a cyclical process, not a linear one. Time management, being linear, is simply the process of organizing and prioritizing your day so that you can get the more value in a shorter unit of time. In other words, your goal with time management is to effectively compress, organize and prioritize activities for maximum efficiency.
Energy management doesn’t work that way. Energy works in a similar system as a currency like money. In other words, after you’ve spent it, you need to regain some more before you try to spend again. Otherwise you end up going into a deficit.