This month we will discuss:

1. Make the Main thing the Main Thing; The Power of Focus
3. Chesapeake News

Make the Main Thing the Main Thing; the Power of Focus:

Several decades ago, Matti and I were in a Rohm & Haas facility in Bristol, PA, getting ready to teach a two-day class on the theory of constraints.  Part of the class was having the students operate a computer simulated business and very seldom does anyone pass on the first go through.  I confronted Matti with a bold prediction; “I believe more than 50% of these guys are going to ace this on the first run.”  Matti figured I had some inside information, so he refused to bite.  I had aced the simulator the first time I ran it – because I am a chemical engineer and we are taught to look for bottlenecks.  Our entire class at Rohm & Haas were chemical engineers and most of the class members aced the simulation.

The Theory of Constraints (TOC) basically says that at any point in time all systems have a constraint that limits performance of that system relative to the goal.  If you can determine the constraint and focus your efforts there, you will have enormous impact.  Everything else is like flailing at the leaves of a tree when the purpose is to chop down the tree.  Flailing at leaves is the mode of behavior that is most common in most endeavors – unfortunately.  At least people feel busy.  Ineffective, but they feel good.

We are in an odd place today.  Let’s focus on “for profit” organizations, although these concepts work in all organizations.  In such organizations the constraint is either going be internal (I have more orders than I have capacity to make), in the market (I have more capacity than market demand) or in the supplier base (I cannot get enough materials to manufacture my orders).  In “normal’ times, the constraint in most organizations is in the market place.  However, these are not normal times.  Briefly, here are a few things we are seeing:

  • Folks cannot get labor.
  • Folks cannot get parts and material.

If you find yourself in one of those situations you may want to totally relook your pricing strategy.  When the constraint is either internal or in your supplier base you want to look at value added (sales price less material cost) divided by the pounds (or unit of measure) of what you are missing.  That is the best way to maximize profits during such times.  You will normally see a shift in product mix and if you are in a competitive environment these ideas/concepts will give you a strategic advantage.


1. Unity is achieved through God and His church; connecting people of faith in unity.
2. Fire is the test of gold; adversity is the test of strong men.  Seneca 4 BC – AD 65, Roman Philosopher
3. You will never make the most of the day that is coming until you evaluate the day that has passed.  John Maxwell
4. It is the heart that makes a rich man.  He is rich according to what he is, not according to what he has.  Henry Ward Beecher.
5. I, Wisdom, live together with good judgement.  I know where to discover knowledge and discernment.  Proverbs 8:12
6. You will never change your life until you change something you do daily.  The secret of your success is found in your daily routine.  John Maxwell
7. Your dog is a philosopher who judges by the rule of knowing or not knowing; and philosophy, whether in man or beast, is the parent of gentleness.  Benjamin Jowett
8. A cheerful look brings joy to the heart; good news makes for good health.  Proverbs 15:30
9. You cannot kindle a fire in any other heart until it is burning within your own.  John Maxwell
10. For wisdom is far more valuable than rubies.  Nothing you desire can compare with it.  Proverbs 8:11
11. You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks.  Winston Churchill
12. Fear is a reaction.  Courage is a choice.  Winston Churchill
13. A dream becomes a reality as a result of your actions, and your actions are controlled, to a large extent, by your habits.  John Maxwell
14. Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.  Winston Churchill
15. A pessimist sees the difficulty in every situation; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.
16. However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results.
17. Life is fraught with opportunities to keep your mouth shut.
18. It is good to be out of your comfort zone.  Just don’t step out of your gift zone.  John Maxwell
19. I choose joy.  I will invite my God to be the God of circumstance.  I will refuse the temptation to be cynical… the tool of the lazy thinker.  I refuse to see people as anything less than human beings created by God.  I will refuse to see any problem as anything less than an opportunity to see God.  Max Lucado

Chesapeake Items:

I hope you and your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday and during this Advent Season are taking time to reflect on last year and begin your planning for 2022.  If you would like help in either personal or corporate planning, please give us a shout.  It is something we love to do.

The blog topic this month is a powerful concept to increase profits in odd times.  Would you like for us to come in and conduct a half day workshop to show you why and to apply these concepts to your business?

Have you considered treating your staff to one of our many leadership books?

Merry Christmas my Friends and have a wonderful and happy New Year.


John Covington