Becoming A Professional Begins With The Intention to Become a Professional.

This is the second blog in a series of blogs about what business professionals can learn about Competitive Reality from professionals in the National Football League.

First and foremost, becoming successful in business or in professional football begins with the intention to do so. We have all read about 8 year-old quarterback sensations who one day want to play in the NFL and win Super Bowls. They train year round, work out rigorously, go to camps, have special diets, hang out with other “driven” kids, have ambitious parents, and live in a world that is aimed at their ambition.

Contrast that with what we at TheFutureWorks see as ”common” in the marketplace. Most business owners we see are “happy” having a business because it gives them a job. They lack a strong ambition. Their 1-year, 3-year, 5-year plans are missing. A big ambition like growing their business and selling the enterprise for a lot of money is absent too. Mission, vision, values, strategies, may be there on paper but there is little commitment. They would like to “make more money” but do not have a specific plan.

Trying to figure everything out for themselves they may read the latest business entertainment book and work on “blinking,” or their “blue ocean,” or attempt to “think slow to go fast,” as if seeking out common knowledge and common practices is going to get them to their Super Bowl.

Here’s the Competitive Reality:

Only after a business owner realizes that their common sense and most obvious assumptions about how to compete in the marketplace are actually causing their failure can they begin to transition to becoming a professional.

And that first move is to realize that common ambitions, common practices and common intentions just won’t cut it. Not if you’re going to win the Super Bowl. Or make an uncommon amount of money. Think top 1%.

So work on your intentions. Make them big. Make sure they are COMMITMENTS, not empty rhetoric.

What future are you committed to produce? Are you committed to becoming a professional at what you are doing?