FOCUS: Think Inside the Box.

How many times have you heard the saying, “Think outside the box?” I have to weigh in on a different perspective after hearing it recently and giving it some thought. After all perspective determines our truth and our truth is what we believe. Those beliefs influence our actions that deliver the met or unmet results and outcomes.

My proposal to you is that you consider; “Thinking inside the box.” Here is what I mean. Inside the box is defined by a set boundaries or walls. These walls are made up of rules that define the space inside and out. Within the box offers the freedom of creativity, and a specific focus.

Outside the box is defined by distractions that tempt you to lose your focus to choose something outside your niche and away from your target. Outside the box is where you accept bad fits that turn into misfits. Those misfits over time discourage you, but provide fertile ground for your seeds of fear, uncertainty and doubt that grow and thrive against your confidence and self-esteem.

What are the distractions in your life that allow you to lose your focus and tempt you to accept futile projects? These “outside the box” undesired projects you propose and accept because you need the money and are desperate for the business.

Inside the box is focused and defined. Like when you go deer hunting; how many ducks do you shoot? Or are you looking for deer? Ready for deer, prepared to shoot a deer.

Don’t get me wrong. I believe in a unique selling proposition or a differentiating value, but target it inside the box of a defined set of boundaries. Other reasons to consider inside the box approach:

1) Less complaints and negative feedback because of unmet expectations.
2) Fewer objections from past stories your share during your presentation of unrelated experiences.
3) Concentrated marketing efforts of the company. What is the perfect fit for your product or service (see Sync or Sink)?
4) Shorten your sales cycle, improved closing ratio and increased sales revenue.

If it walks like a duck, smells like a duck and looks like a duck, move on. It’s not a deer. It’s a misfit and a headache waiting to happen.

Concentrate on your targeted niche inside the box. Be creative and enjoy the freedom of feeling focused.




  1. Jeff Perry says

    Scott – I could not help but see a parallel in the world of jazz here. In jazz you do have a “box” – you have a song form, established chord changes/harmony, and a defined melody. Yet within this there is still a world of possibilities to explore and the masterful will take listeners on a journey that they become engaged and invested in. If you “go outside,” it sounds dissonant, confuses your fellow players, and most people will not enjoy it/listen to it/buy it!