Are You Assuming You Have Won the Game?

At a recent business retreat I commented that the faster the world changes the faster business assumptions can become obsolete. Just two days later a professional football player caught a game winning touchdown with a few seconds to play – only to have his competitor knock the ball out of his hands just before the referee could signal touchdown. His team lost the game moments later.

Had the player made a quick and wrong assumption that it was a touchdown? What if the competitor had assumed the play was over and given up? Interesting to think about how our assumptions can drive our business results.

What are the assumptions you take to bed with you every night (strictly business ones!)? That worry you, or even those that may be giving you a false confidence about the future?  What if you are wrong or right? One can extend this thinking to consideration of all the assumptions that are impacting your results – assumptions made inside your organization and outside as well by suppliers, competitors, new entrants, etc.

One hears sports commentators say that once the rookie gets some playing time the game will slow down for him/her. Then he or she will start to realize his/her potential.

Smart companies and leaders also slow down time in the midst of urgency and “got to get it done today” thinking. They stop and do the critical thinking and inquiry that gives them confidence that they have thought through all the angles.

One simple and effective way they do this is to take time to “get out of the business” to work “on the business”.


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