Offense is the Only Strategy You Need for Success in Business

If you’re anything like me, last week’s pre-season games put a twinkle in your toes. Football Sundays are near and the anticipation of a new season is very exciting! How will the new recruits gel with the vets?  What impact will trades have on offense? Defense? So many unanswered questions!

With Patriot’s QB, Tom Brady, suspended for four games the team’s offensive line will have to work harder than usual to get points on our scoreboard.  Defense’s role does not change much

Speaking of offense…

Recently I spent an afternoon at a local Boston high school on Career Day discussing the idea of working for yourself.  I sat on a panel with seven professionals – librarians, philanthropists, creative professionals, and military professionals – but the students seemed to only have an interest those who were self-employed.  The room grew quiet when the caterer, the graphic designer, and the writer spoke.  The Q&A sessions had one central theme – how to be a successful entrepreneur.  The students did not ask much about how to start a business; they wanted to know how to keep it operating.

There are a host of incredible opportunities for young people who want to become entrepreneurs, right now.  In addressing the students, I wanted to make sure the budding entrepreneurs got the answer they were looking for.  We needed to talk about the one mistake that could keep their businesses from being a success.  Choosing to play defensively when you’ve won the coin toss may work for your favorite NFL team but it rarely does in the business world.

In football, the offensive line sets the tone for the play.  They plan for a desired outcome and work toward it.  A strategic offense makes a great defense.  As the play unfolds, you react to threats to your offensive game.  In similar fashion, your strategy in business should not be one of reaction, but of action.  When the bad times eventually roll around a great business plan had the foresight to see it coming.  Develop your skill set. Do not allow your weaknesses to limit you.  You cannot just be a defensive player; you have to start with your offense.

Always be ready to make adjustments.  When the season – or fiscal year – ends, and your team has suffered injuries you take time to re-evaluate things.  The strong offense makes time to regroup and move forward, resisting the urge to rely on one player’s strengths and abilities.

Every business is different but successful ones share something in common.  They play offensively.  Football players know exactly what they should be doing for each and every play that is called. A good offense has already memorized the play book before heading into the game. Ultimately, as an entrepreneur, you need to decide how your offense should operate.

Look ahead to all the possibilities of what could happen.  Money will not always be flowing and external factors will play a role in your success or lack thereof.  Be ready for every possible outcome. Don’t lose sight of what is ahead.

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