The Contact Sport of Business Requires Fundamentals and Hail Marys

Some argue that success is the result of hard work, while others believe that it all depends on a bit of luck. Regardless of what the motivational posters of the world would have you believe, true, lasting success in business is the result of both hard work and luck.

Success Requires a Foundation of Fundamentals

Vince Lombardi and George Halas, two of the greatest coaches in football history, understood the core of achieving success, on and off the field. They both demonstrated a belief that success resulted from a consistent focus on the fundamental skills. While they certainly serve as role models to today’s athletic coaches, their insight can be applied to modern-day business efforts, as well. Fundamentals win games. And winning leads to championships.

Peter Drucker, the father of management, said that the only purpose of any business is to create a customer. Just as in any professional athletic organization, there are hundreds of plays used in the pursuit of victory. So, too, in business, there are myriad “plays” we employ to create, and keep, a customer. Nonetheless, there is most definitely a core of fundamental business practices upon which success typically rests.

The increasing speed of technology and broadening reach of communication give us more options than ever before when it comes to reaching our audience. It can seem like a disproportionate amount of focus is given to the latest gimmick, rather than the fundamentals of good business. Big mistake. But this creates a big opportunity, too.

Why? On the “playing field” full of competitors throwing Hail Mary passes, the professionals focusing on fundamentals can stand out more than ever. While everyone is trying to construct exotic “stand out” plays to get attention, you can not only stand out from them but also create sustainable customer relationships.

Hail Marys as an Exception, Not a Rule

Regarding all of the “unusual” things professionals do to attract and keep customers, Peter Drucker also said, “Miracles are great, but they are so damn unpredictable!” He went on to state that business owners should instead focus on the fundamentals.

We all want to experience those exciting and miraculous exchanges with customers. But focusing on them as the “norm” can severely limit the likelihood of our ever achieving them. Instead, the opportunities lie where virtually no one else is looking. Right under our noses.

Each and every day, by focusing on the fundamentals of doing that one little extra thing, like a newspaper on the porch instead of the driveway, we can win small victories that will add up to a big win in the end. When the need to gain extra yards meets with an opportunity to throw the occasional Hail Mary pass, go for it. Mastering the fundamentals provides the freedom to gamble a bit on the unknown long shots.

Your End Game

Every attempt does not produce a hit.

And every hit does not produce a home run.

But every single home run is the result of both an attempt and a hit.

Mike Muhney the co-inventor of ACT! is now the CEO & co-founder of vipOrbit Software, creators of VIPorbit contact management apps for iPhone, iPad and Mac.

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