Updated: Dec 31, 2020
Get motivated for 2021 with these 3 leadership tips from Infuzion Solutions CEO Corrie Olson.
In the book Smarter Faster Better, I read the story of creating the Japanese bullet train, Shinkansen. In the 1950s, a large portion of Japan’s population lived between Tokyo and Osaka, were separated by 320 miles of train track, making the journey about 6 hours and 40 minutes. After the devastation of the Second World War, Japan was looking for ways to boost the economy. So in 1955, the head engineer of the Japanese railway system issued a challenge to the nation’s finest engineers to invent a faster train.
Each time they presented plans, the head engineer would reject them as not being fast enough and not achieving the goal of connecting these cities. Each time, the engineers returned with obstacles that made his request almost impossible, coupled with current mechanical limitations and obstacles on the mountainous terrain. Each time, the head engineer would push back, encouraging them to think out of the box by building different materials and making tunnels where none existed. In 1964, the Shinkansen, the world’s first bullet train, left Tokyo and completed its arrival to Osaka in 3 hours and 58 minutes at an average speed of 120 mph.
Currently, the bullet train travels at speeds of 150 – 200 mph, and over its 50+ year history, it has carried over 5.3 billion passengers without one single fatality.
This story has stuck with me not because I’m interested in transportation history but because I am inspired by making the impossible possible. It didn’t happen overnight, it wasn’t cheap, and it wasn’t easy. However, the vision of what the country needed and the determination not to fail created an environment that gave birth to new technologies and innovations to achieve the goal.
Most of us are not faced with the economic welfare of a country. Still, each of us that operates and/or manages a company is faced with ways we can step ahead of our competitors and blaze new trails to secure our company’s welfare. As CEO of Infuzion Solutions, I take that role very seriously, as I am sure you do with your organization. We have to balance the day-to-day functions, continually improve staff and products, and look for new opportunities and innovations. If you are like me, the day-to-day tasks often overtake the focus on improving your organization or dedicating time to new opportunities and innovations within your industry. As we start a new year, it’s a good time to evaluate how you make sure not to lose focus on your organization's broader goals.
Here are a few helpful ideas to encourage you in 2021:
1. Plan your time wisely
Unplanned time is the time you are giving to the will of others and their demands put upon you at the moment. Planning time to meet and brainstorm on innovations or business improvements is just as important as the day-to-day tasks needed to run your business. Scheduling them within your week sets the priority.
2. Dream big and push limits
If we only set out to accomplish what we know can be done, then we aren’t pushing our limits, and typically we won’t be pushing ahead of our competitors. Setting stretch goals is a good way to look beyond your current abilities. Because it is a stretch, you might not know the steps to achieve the goal, but you can take action steps to get you toward your goal and review as each step is achieved before taking the next steps. Be realistic with time and budget, making measurable goals for each step to see the progress as you move forward.
3. Find Inspiration in creative solutions
Often being tied down to the day-to-day tasks removes us from the inspiration of more creative solutions and innovations. Talking with others in your industry, learning from those who have trail blazed before us, seeking out interesting leaders and advisors can help us bounce ideas off someone with knowledge in our industry or a vested interest in our future.
Finding creative solutions to business needs is one of the exciting jobs I get to assist with at Infuzion. I hope as you strive to dream big and find new paths to opportunities for your business, you will let us help you bridge the gap with software and technology options. Our software package's best innovation comes from the creative ideas that distributors have to solve their business problems. Partnering together is a great way to achieve more than either of us can achieve apart.
- Corrie Olson, CEO of Infuzion Solutions
From supply chain management to accounting and sales needs, Infuzion® brings together industry-specific software solutions with the power of Microsoft technology.
Infuzion's ERP software solutions and services are used by small and medium-sized enterprises across a wide variety of industries, including wholesale, distribution, healthcare, higher education, and professional services. Their solutions help maximize software investments while improving staff productivity and company profitability.
Infuzion Solutions is a certified Microsoft Dynamics GP partner and a small business specialist. Infuzion not only assists small to middle-sized enterprises in implementing new administration and accounting software but consults with those wishing to improve their business processes.