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Success Revisited

Jan 22nd, 2016 | By | Category: Jack Schrock's Blog

Jack SchrockI can write or tell a story much easier than I can perform brain surgery, or for that matter, do a thousand other things. It goes without saying that we are at our best when playing to our strengths so most of us are inclined to tackle the easy tasks first. However, the easy tasks may not be the most important matters before us.

Many years ago the government saved two years in the implementation of the Polaris Weapons System by developing and using a computer driven program called “Critical Path Method” or CPM for short. CPM identifies those elements that are likely to delay or even jeopardize success. CPM doesn’t tell us only about the easy tasks that we like to do, it tells us about all tasks that are critical to the outcome. And, I’ve known managers who are always eager to score a few points by taking on the easy task while letting someone else handle the more difficult. That’s what I call a “cheap shot.”

In business we must routinely solve both the easy and complex tasks if we are to really succeed and the first essential step in that process is to be able to recognize all the challenges before us and to focus on first things first. Put another way, if we really don’t know what we’re doing, then Lady Luck is in charge. If that’s the case, it’s more fun to go to Vegas and spin the roulette wheel because the chances of success are far greater there than just taking care of the easy stuff in our businesses.