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I spend a lot of time thinking and studying about what makes people successful. My very livelihood centers around how mortgage leaders can steer their companies toward success, so it's a very important issue to me. Much of what I've written about focuses on the traits and characteristics of leaders. For this article, I would like to focus on one important behavior for successful leadership.
When I thought about how successful leaders behave differently than those who don't succeed, I kept coming back to one word again and again: focus. Successful leaders know how to zero in on a problem and devote all of their available resources toward its solution. Unsuccessful leaders are distracted by the entire dartboard, all the while trying to hit the bullseye. Successful leaders don't even see the dartboard; they only see the bullseye.
Maintaining a strong sense of focus is more important today in our industry than it ever has been. Not many years ago, it would have been possible to thrive without focus. And many, I'm sure, rode the waves of a thriving marketplace all the while wasting resources and missing important targets. In the current market, such lax behavior will not stand. For leaders to succeed in the current market, we've got to develop a strong sense of focus. We've got to be able to ascertain what's really important and put everything else out of our minds. In business, as in life, we usually hit what we're aiming for. The question you have to continually ask yourself is, "What are you aiming for?" And, more importantly, how good is your aim?
David Lykken is 40-year mortgage industry veteran who has been an owner operator in three mortgage banking companies and a software company. As a former business owner/operator, today David loves helping C-Level executives and business owners achieve extraordinary results via consulting, coaching and communications, with the objective of eliminating corporate dysfunction, establishing and communicating a clear corporate strategy while focusing on process improvement and operational efficiencies resulting in increased profitability. David has been a regular contributor on CNBC and Fox Business News and currently hosts a successful weekly radio program, “Lykken on Lending,” that is heard each Monday at noon (Central Standard Time) by thousands of mortgage professionals. He produces a daily one-minute video called “Today’s Mortgage Minute” that appears on hundreds of television, radio and newspaper Web sites across America. He may be reached by phone at (512) 501-2810 or by e-mail at [email protected].