This is a time of the year when there is a lot of focus on what we don’t have. How else does one make a wish list without thinking about what we’d like but don’t own? Wishful thinking is a good thing as long as it’s grounded in reality. I mean, your kid may want you to buy them a functioning light saber along with a robot opponent with which to joust, but light sabers don’t exist, at least not of the sort that the kid might see in the Star Wars movie. May the force be with you as you explain that.
It’s a point we business folks need to keep in mind as well – both with respect to our wants as well as to our fears.
What scares you? Snakes? Spiders? Sharks? In terms of what can hurt or kill us, we should be way more afraid of french fries and soft drinks yet there are no panicked stampedes away from McDonald’s as there are when a fin is sighted in the water. We over-think things sometimes in business and in so doing we ignore the real threats. At the same time we aspire to get things done that simply aren’t grounded in reality. Obviously I’m an advocate of reaching beyond our grasps, and as we’re doing so here at year’s end, let’s think about doing so in a way that pushes us forward to realistic outcomes based on facts and data. It’s great to think about going to the moon but to do so is going to involve building a rocket so maybe that needs to be the immediate focus (I’m throwing out the idea of teleportation – is that too narrow of me?).
So let’s make a bold list of achievable things as we get to year’s end, keeping in mind the things that can really derail us as we get to those goals. Sound like a plan?