There is a huge difference between possessing and being able to use tools effectively.
One of my friends bought a new set of golf clubs. This is nothing new – he does that every couple of years. It prompted a mutual friend to sarcastically comment, “you have the best golf game money can buy.”
The point he was making is that having the latest and greatest equipment is just one part of the road to success.
I understand the attraction. I like to fish. Some basic equipment is required to start and having a selection of lures or rods can legitimately make a difference in the final outcome. But at some point using them correctly is more important than having more options. The new shiny object or technique reels us in – pardon the pun. The promise is alluring.
Having the right tools can make all the difference in the world. They can save time and produce much better results than not. But just having the tools does not guarantee success. This is where patience and wisdom come into play.
Learning how to wield a tool, be it a golf club or a circle hook, is vital. You must be patient, learn how and when to use it, and give it time for it to become effective for you. If you don’t, you are wasting your money and possibly getting worse results than you would otherwise.
Our businesses are the same. There is a constant flow of new management theories, fads, software programs, and other shiny new objects that promise to save time, generate revenue, or simplify business. But you have to master the basics, understand when and how to use these new tools, and employ the right ones for your specific situation. Just like in golf or fishing, you may need to hire a coach or a guide to help you get the best results.