If you are someone who has ever worked with a fitness trainer, you have probably heard their mantra: “engage your core”. It turns out, almost everything you do in fitness becomes easier, safer and the results more prominent when you involve the muscles of your core.
Turns out, the same is true in business.
Why is that important for business?
Wherever you are looking to add some “umph” – even if it is theoretically a leg or arm exercise – if you source your energy from your core, it is easier. This is true in business as well. Maybe you think you need to do some marketing or improve sales, but the truth is: if you haven’t strengthened the core of your business – of what you really do – you’ll never get far, and it could be dangerous.
“Dabbling” is an example of not using your core. “If we don’t do it every day, we don’t do it any day.” So what is your core competence? If you can’t do your best work for your clients, should you be doing that work? Your core not only the most important “muscle” in business to develop, but it also informs you about the kinds of clients to go after, and the kind of marketing you should do to convey that message.
If you are wondering how strong your core is, ask yourself this important question: “If this company was 10 times the size, what would break?” That is where your focus should be.
One thing that is symptomatic of a problem with your core is if you can’t have consensus in your company about what your core business is, or if you don’t have a culture where you can discuss it. You need to understand your core, and actively support it. If you value innovation, for instance, you have to celebrate failure proactively.
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