Tunnel vision. We’re all guilty of it.
“My daughter is the smartest in her class.”
“These jeans from college still look fabulous on me!”
“The Kansas Jayhawks are the best team in the NCAA every year.”
Selective perception isn’t always wrong (the Jayhawks really are the best team every year :), but it can limit our ability to remain open and objective. Whether its personal or professional, tunnel vision means we have blinders on. And when we keep our binders on for an extended period of time, the more distorted reality can become. It’s no different in business.
First, let me say that most business leaders didn’t get to where they are by having others make decisions for them; and nobody is denying that they’re decisive, intelligent, confident and disciplined. But running a business doesn’t safeguard you from the effects of tunnel vision. In fact, it makes perfect sense that business owners and leaders are exposed. You’re too close to it all: your goals, the strategy, the processes, the mission, the vision, and maybe even the employees.
And when you’re that close, it’s easy to lose focus of the big picture. That’s why every business can benefit from an outside perspective. When you and your employees are busy serving your clients or perfecting your product/service, it’s time to let an outside business consultant evaluate your company’s current state and consider solutions that lead to continued growth.
3 benefits from a business consulting perspective
Whether your business is running like a well-oiled machine or you’ve noticed some things falling through the cracks, an outside perspective can give you new insights into what’s working and what isn’t. You’ll have the opportunity to make more accurate forecasts, set new goals and implement a strategy to accomplish them.
If you’re considering a consulting firm, I offer three top benefits for your business:
#1 – A focus on the big picture
From strategy to implementation, companies don’t always have the time, resources or wherewithal to push pause and look at the larger issues.
You’re already ahead of your competition if you’re able to recognize your limitations. And while you may not always know how to implement a strategy and promote growth, an outside perspective can help.
#2 – Specialized skills
If you’re looking for outside consultation, you’re not looking for your equal or someone who has experience in your exact field. You’re looking for someone who’s able to pull from a variety of experiences in a variety of fields. On top of creating new ideas, they’re experts in problem-solving and thinking differently, bringing a kind of cross-pollination to the table that has the ability to produce something new and unexpected.
#3 – Effects of organizational change
Every business must be willing and able to challenge the status quo and shake things up. The term “organizational effectiveness” is the ability to adapt future strategy and behavior to environmental change and to optimize the contribution of the organization’s human resources. Professor of organizational behavior Arthur N. Turner shares with the Harvard Business Review:
“Consultants are not crusaders bent on reforming management styles and assumptions. But a professional diagnosis should include assessment of overall organizational effectiveness, and the consulting process should help lower whatever barriers to improvement are discovered.”
Therefore, successfully implementing organizational change/effectiveness requires new ideas and concepts as well as taking a look at techniques and style of management that managers have relied upon for years.
How has tunnel vision affected your business?
A new, fresh perspective is vital to the continued growth of every business. Staying stagnant will eventually rear its ugly head in different ways, and when it does, both the business and morale suffers. Take a minute to really consider how tunnel vision might be affecting your business and the barriers it may be creating.
Remember that employees rely on their business leaders to keep the company moving forward. If you want to learn more about our consulting services, we’d love to be your outside perspective.
Denise Kruse is the CEO and owner of AdamsGabbert, a business outcomes consulting firm supported by staffing, recruiting and payroll services and Microsoft Office 365—all designed to make business better for clients. Has your company handled the challenges brought on by tunnel vision? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page or on Twitter @AdamsGabbert!