Too often I feel I am too busy with day-to-day stuff, like customer presentations and back-to-back meetings. It might be a question of keeping pace with the mailbox that tends to overflow from time to time, or finalizing a product positioning document. But I have a technique for reminding myself to lift my nose from the grindstone every now and then and think a bit ahead. It’s actually just a reminder in my outlook calendar; it’s as simple as that.
A good technique is to use the “5 Why” questions, where I ask myself why I am doing this thing, just to get the right perspective. Let me share an example. I’m writing a marketing product positioning document for a major campaign to be launched soon. The 5 Why’s can look like this;
“I am writing a marketing product positioning document”
- WHY #1? Because we want to launch a huge marketing campaign in the coming months
- WHY #2? Because we want to increase IFS brand awareness and awareness about IFS capabilities in this particular area
- WHY #3? Because through increased brand awareness we will generate more leads and deals
- WHY #4? Because if suspects, prospects and customers get a teaser about the value of these innovations, and actually try them before buying, they will immediately see the great benefits.
- WHY #5? Because seeing is believing; and believing is the first step in the buying process.
It’s not the answer to these questions itself that is the most important aspect, but rather that you invest time to think about what you are doing, and think, “Can I do this thing more smartly”. You get the opportunity to really think, and in that process you may come up with new thoughts and ideas that can give you a new perspective.
My advice is to dare to slow down a bit, challenge the stuff you are occupied with at this particular moment. Try to free some time to consider whether you are too busy to absorb new ideas and innovations. I think the picture above says more than I can about why it’s so important to slow down and think is—so I’ll stop my post here.