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This week’s focus: A month or so ago, I was driving home from a football match with my son when he said the fateful words, “Dad, I don’t feel well.” Three nanoseconds later he was violently sick. He was sick on his clothes, sick on the seat, sick on the carpet, sick in the drinks holders, sick in the ashtray, sick in the door pockets. Let’s just say he was very, very sick.

After getting him home I took my car to be cleaned at the local car wash. The guys did a good job, although when I got back in the car I did have the vague impression that I could still detect a slight hint of ‘eau-de-vomit’. I hadn’t noticed any smell however for the past few weeks, however. Until last Sunday, that is, when my wife got in the car. “Oh my god,” she shrieked, retching, “It stinks!

We quickly get used to our environment and can, over time, fail to notice its problems and limitations. We learn to live with things. If you want to focus on improving performance, you often need a new and different perspective. That’s why new executives and leaders to an organisation can make such a difference in their first few months. After that period, they no longer smell the stink quite as clearly. Other ways that you can get some fresh air into your lungs include benchmarking your business against other companies, organizing an external review of your business, or investing in some personal development.

What are you doing to get a new perspective and to ensure that your environment and organisation is healthy and effective?

Off The Record: Cars And Girls by Prefab Sprout

Little boy, got a hot rod

Thinks it makes him some kind of new God

Well, this is one race he won’t win

‘Cause life’s no cruise with a cool chick

Too many folks feelin’ car sick

But it never pulls in

© Stuart Cross 2015. All rights reserved.