Focus and concentration are two tools that are used by the executive to bring about results that will be of greatest benefit to himself and to the organization he serves. Peter Drucker, in his book, The Effective Executive, tells us that “The way to apply productively mankind’s greatest range is to bring to bear a large number of individual capabilities on one task.” From Drucker’s statement, one can conclude that there are two key tools that the effective executive must use to achieve this productivity: focus and concentration.
The first tool, focus, is important because is directs the attention and activity of the executive or the organization towards a singular achievement – the successful outcome. Focus is the tool that helps the effective executive decide what should be shut in and kept within the sphere of attention and effort. The second tool, concentration, is the undivided attention of the executive or his organization towards the object of focus. The need for concentration is great, because the executive is constantly presented with new information and opportunities, which, if not filtered through the sieve of concentration, will quickly distract from the present task. Concentration is the tool that helps the effective executive decide what should be shut out.
While a clearly defined list of successful outcomes, be they personal or organizational, are essential, without the tools to accomplish these outcomes, few lasting results are likely to be achieved. When the tools of focus and concentration are applied to ensure that energies are directed toward the achievement of defined outcomes, the effective executive will be able to impact his organization in a positive and productive manner.