After a week on the ocean waves, the Ionian to be precise, I was ready for a couple of days resting my bones in a hotel on solid land. My friends Jon & Jenni offered me a lift and so I plugged the address of my hotel into the satnav and off we went. Not very far, only about 12 minutes according to the wonder machine without which our travel in Cephalonia, or indeed anywhere strange to us, would be much more difficult. But even so, as I was trasmitting the instructions I missed a turn and as the re-routing added 16 minutes to the original 12 minute journey we had to do a 180 and retrace our steps. But where to turn? The road was essentially single track and too windy to risk a turn in the road. So on we went for a minute or so until we found a property that had thoughtfully provided a turning area. Round we went and back on the right track…
No more than 150 yards back down the road Jenni suddenly asked “Was that your hotel?”. I hadn’t noticed but thought there was a possibility that the satnav had been taking me to the back door whilst we had just seen another entrance. So we back up and indeed we had just turned round the the entrance to the very hotel I was looking for and had not noticed! How could we do that, after all there was a huge great sign announcing “Hotel Galaxy” in lit up blue letters!
A few hours later that old phrase from Steven Covey “Make the main thing the main thing” popped into my mind and I realised what had happened. I had been so focussed on the process – following the satnav instructions – that I lost sight of the outcome – arriving at the hotel.
Do you ever make that mistake – letting the process become more important than the outcome? Never forget what the journey is about. If you are on jollidays then the journey may well be as important, or even more so, than the destination. But in business, it’s the product, the outcome, the deliverable, that is the only reason you are following a process.