Yesterday afternoon, my daughter Mindy and I went out to hit golf balls at the local driving range. I purchased a large bucket instead of my normal medium or small size because I’m getting ready to play in a tournament on Saturday, and figured I could use the extra swings.
While the concept was okay, the results were stupid.
The reason for the stupidity was centered not so much on strategy, but on tactics. Instead of keeping with my normal practice pattern, I found myself “raking and ripping.”This is a common malady for golfers on a driving range. It’s the act of “raking” a golf ball from it’s little waiting trough to the mat, and then “ripping” at it. The increased number of balls over time actually wore me out. It’s not how you play golf. You don’t just stand in one spot hitting ball after ball with no break; rather you hit a ball, walk to the next one, hit a different club, and rinse and repeat. I basically hit more balls in rapid fire mode, than I would over four hours on the course.
The results by the end of the session were terrible. I lost all accuracy, got mad (which exacerbated the situation), and left for home frustrated at my results. While I enjoyed my time together with Mindy, that would have even been improved with a better experience.
What would NOT have been stupid was slowing the process down, being patient, having goals, and resting when I needed it. The results and experience would have been better and I’d have had more fun.
This analogy also fits a business problem.
Business leaders often spend too much time “raking and ripping” in their business an career. Here are a few examples:
- Not having clear goals and metrics before implementing initiatives and projects
- Veering from strategies and tactics that worked in an effort to falsely accelerate results
- Becoming impatient with bad results and not taking the time and effort to find the root cause of those results
- Being stubborn rather than nimble
- Seeking perfection rather than success
- Allowing poor performance in business to encroach in personal relationships
- Working one’s self to exhaustion, rather than taking time to rest and rejuvenate
It took me until this morning to realize that my mechanics aren’t bad, rather my process was …, well, stupid. At the very least, I needed time to rest. Just like in weight training, your muscles need time in between sets (and days) to rest; I needed to rest at proper intervals; you need to find time to rest your brain and spirit. Otherwise, you end up frustrated and that transfers to everyone in your circle of life.
So don’t be stupid like I was. Take time to plan, strategize, learn, and have patience. And by all means, carve out time to rest and re-charge so you’ll always be on your A game!
© 2016 Toro Consulting, Inc. All rights reserved