It can sometimes be helpful to look at different sources of inspiration when trying to improve your business. Plenty of us look to the past for our inspiration, others look to our competitors, many people look to business gurus, but some of us choose to find our inspiration somewhere more unusual, in our pastimes. Using a game strategy to push a business forward is a different approach, but it has been proven successful for many.
Here are some of the best tips for accelerating your business.
What Poker Strategists Say
Poker is an incredibly strategic game and as such, there’s a lot to learn from its big players. One particular rule that will help you time and time again in life is remembering to look back before looking ahead. A good poker player will remember and learn from poorly played hands rather than looking for an excuse for their performance.
The same rules should apply to your life and business decisions. Perhaps, a meeting that you held ended up being totally unproductive and leaving your employees feeling deflated. It can be very easy to pass the buck onto employees, saying that they came into the meeting in the wrong frame of mind, but it might have been down to the planning of the meeting, or it’s delivery. Learn from this mistake and plan accordingly for next time.
Similarly, if you’ve historically come out of negotiations poorly, then there’s no shame in admitting that your technique is weak and you need some help. Signing up for coaching is a proactive way to tackle your weaknesses, or if you’d feel more comfortable, there is no shame in hiring somebody to do the hard negotiating for you. Knowing where we are able to improve, but also being big enough to accept our limitations, is an important attribute of a true business leader.
Unexpected Lessons From E-Sports Gamers
E-Sports gaming has recently exploded in popularity. Playing your favorite videogame, it turns out, could actually help you earn you some serious cash. Some of the biggest prize money pots can be found at these competitive gaming competitions, so how do the players keep cool when there’s so much at stake?
One technique that many e-sports pros use is to do a ‘brain dump’ before bed. This is a technique that many of us are familiar with in one way or another, but it’s familiar for a reason – it really works. It will be a familiar feeling to any CEO, lying in bed at night, your mind buzzing with thoughts. Decisions you have to make, meetings to schedule, notes you mustn’t forget to bring up. It can make getting a good night’s sleep impossible. Having your mind swirling like this overnight is unlikely to produce any good results and will almost inevitably end in you feeling foggy-headed in the morning.
A ‘brain dump’ solves both of these problems, in a wonderfully simple way. All it involves is writing down all of those brain cluttering thoughts right before you go to sleep. Simply leave a pen and pad by your bedside table or a journal. One thing you should really try to avoid is typing these thoughts on any electronic device, as the blue light from the screen can have an awakening effect on your brain. For this one, using an old fashioned pen and paper is the way to go.
Some people find it helpful to formulate a written plan for the next day, while others simply make a list of all of the things they need to think about tomorrow. This technique can also be useful for increasing employee productivity, so it’s a good one to share in meetings. It is a friendly and productive way of ensuring that everyone arrives to work well-rested and ready for the day ahead.
Finally, the Wise Chess Player
Chess has been played for centuries, yet still, players come up with new ways to get their opponent in check. Some of the greatest minds on our planet are avid chess players; it takes logical thinking, great memory, foresight and the ability to truly focus. As such is a test of the human mind, it’s easy to see why chess players might just have the tips we need to get ahead in business. In a game of chess, the end goal is always clear – protect the king – everything that is done throughout the game is done with that end goal in mind.
Learning this way of simplifying things down to simple and tangible goals is an essential approach to take in your business strategy. It can seem daunting at first stripping back all of the excess and finding one true focus, but it will pay off in the long run. Focus on that one goal that you’d like to achieve above all others and work doggedly towards that until you achieve it.
Of course, like any good chess player or CEO, you need to have a plan. Planning takes time and must look several moves into the future, rather than dealing reactively to obstacles that are put in your way. Think like a chess player and prepare for everything, so that when challenges arise, you already know how to deal with them.
When formulating your plan, it’s also useful to seek advice from those around you as even the best chess players make mistakes that other people could’ve spotted. Learning to plan, prepare, and tirelessly work towards your goals are the absolute key, both to winning a game of chess and truly seeing your business succeed.