Staying Focused and Clearing the Noise

There was a time when organizations had a contingency plan just in case things changed. In today’s world, change is the rule rather than the exception. How do we manage the daily onslaught of distractions, continuous change and upgrades and stay focused on our mission? 

How do we clear the noise?

Each year The Fedcap Group launches a new Leadership Academy—comprised of emerging leaders from across the organization. During the first session, we spend time discussing the importance of tuning out the noise in order to enhance our focus, and our analytical and critical thinking.

We talk about the importance of using questions to clear the noise…moving away from being swayed by what we think we know and focusing on learning more and developing a deeper understanding of the problems we are trying to solve.

Business Insider advises that in order to develop the focus muscle, companies need to select 1 to 3 high priority goals and stick to them. In the same spirit, several years ago Steve Jobs said something that has stuck with me: “Focus is not about saying yes. It is about saying no to the hundred other good ideas that clutter the mind and shift the focus.” 

This has been the strategy of The Fedcap Group as we established our five bold goals to make a lasting difference. In my December 9th 2019 blog, I introduced our 5 bold goals:

1.) Every person living in foster care has the resources to go to college and graduate;

2.) Individuals who leave prison/jail get a job, rejoin their communities and do not reoffend; 

3.) Adults with an intellectual disability who want a job are employed at a competitive wage;

4.) People on public assistance obtain jobs and reduce dependency on government assistance; and

5.) Children ages 0-6 are prepared and inspired to complete their education, obtain employment and live full lives.

We are driven to achieve these goals. We are spending our time researching these five issues. We are asking questions. We are studying what has worked and what has not worked. We are establishing our baseline, building and testing innovative practice strategies, developing mechanisms for measurement and reporting, and we are building an organizational culture of possibility and accountability.

As a large organization these goals bind us –they are the demonstration of our common mission. And as these goals become reality, they become our legacy.

To be successful each leader of The Fedcap Group has to critically think, clear the noise and, as Steve Jobs said, say no.

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