Depth Perception

Do your vision and mission include a longer view? Do you have a five or 10-year plan? Are you considering branching out into a different segment of HVAC — or maybe other trades?

Have you begun exploring succession planning? Whether you are 40 or 60, it’s never too early to look forward to what the company might look like without you. Do you own a family business with plans to pass it on to the next generation? Are you thinking of selling outright, or maybe considering an employee ownership option?

The start of this new decade is a good time to get those binoculars out and look past the immediate horizon into the future for your business. The first step is evaluating all your options with clear eyes.

Focusing Speed and Accuracy

In business, it’s important to react to change and be able to adjust our focus as opportunities present themselves. Sometimes it’s all about timing. What may not look like a great opportunity today could become a huge one in six months.

The opposite can be true if we try to chase every new “fad” that presents itself. As business owners, we are constantly bombarded by new opportunities. They come at us at trade shows and industry meetings, not to mention the constant bombardment of emails and phone calls with promises of the next new thing that will catapult your company to overnight success.

The hard part is separating the noise from what could potentially be a great long-term play for your company’s future growth and success. As we are presented with opportunities, we need to be able to quickly evaluate them and either dismiss them, or dig deeper with great speed and accuracy.

Consider adopting a process that allows you to quickly filter out the noise allowing you to evaluate the good opportunities.

A great way to do this is with a Ben Franklin-like filter where, in one column, you list all the things you never want to get into, whether it’s because you don’t feel comfortable, or just flat out dislike certain things.

In the other column list out the kinds of things you might be interested in exploring, whether its new technologies, new markets, or new trades. The longer the lists the better. Then when an opportunity presents itself quickly scan your filters and decide whether to hit the delete button or look a little closer.

By the way, as I write this column, I just turned sixty, and within two days developed a “floater” in my left eye. Sucks to get old… Might be why my focus this month turned to vision – no pun intended!