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Go Deep, Then Wide: Building Integrative Health Practices

Guest post courtesy Glenn Sabin of FON Consulting

sea-79606_1280Contrary to this article’s title, entrepreneurs and business managers naturally do the exact opposite: focusing widely but not deeply enough. That’s a productivity killer. Let me explain.
See, when it comes to running a successful clinic we’re mindful of all the big picture details and we’re often jumping around simultaneously from task to task dutifully trying to keep all the balls in motion in order to make steady progress. We put a positive sounding spin on this by calling it multitasking. Might sound good but…

In reality, this misguided approach to ‘productivity’ typically results in slower growth and missed opportunity.

I’m not suggesting you blindly disregard what’s happening around you, or forego the execution of a broad based plan informed by comprehensive assessment. You surely have significant day-to-day mission essential operational duties that require your attention; however, to the extent possible, after clearly establishing your strategic business development plan, you must concentrate on each and every task individually and completely with laser-like FOCUS. Because…

Multitasking is a Misnomer

It’s actually serial tasking and, in reality, it proves highly counterproductive by zapping precious energy and reducing cognitive capacity.

In order to genuinely reposition or grow your business, it’s absolutely necessary to adhere to your well-designed plan day in and day out while better managing, limiting or totally removing all other distractions. Even if you don’t have someone to whom you can delegate significant tasks, you can still carve out uninterrupted focus time by prioritizing wisely.

After gaining initial traction, you need to leverage that momentum and keep making progress by going deeper and methodically tackling the next priority on your list.

I am speaking from experience positioning and growing my own businesses as well as scores of integrative practices I’ve helped over the years. We are all susceptible to debilitating serial tasking and it’s a difficult habit to break.

That said, it is sometimes necessary to deviate from an existing business development strategy; there’s definitely an art and science to knowing precisely when to pivot. However, you MUSTbe disciplined and patiently stick with your strategy plan specifics allowing ample time and space for things to fully develop. Until then, you will never accurately know how your plan is working.

If Einstein’s definition of insanity is repeating the same actions but expecting different results, then what’s equally as foolish is quitting your project halfway through because of interruptions and distractions and assuming the plan itself is fundamentally flawed.

Going wide—as in breadth and scope—is easy. Going deep by methodically completing specific tasks underpinning a well-designed master strategy is not. The latter takes greater focus, persistence, patience and discipline but provides the strongest opportunity for achieving genuinely sustainable long-term success.


Your fiscal, human, time and energy resources are limited. Between emails, calls, texts and myriad office distractions, getting sidetracked and not going deeply enough to successfully move the ‘business development needle’ is likely… unless we’re mindful of common tendencies and take control.

Stop serial tasking and attempting to respond to everyone’s needs in real time. Apply a level of emotional intelligence to differentiate the needs of others in greater context of your own strategic business needs and priorities. You want to intelligently and constructively ‘‘respond” outside your newly designated ‘strategic focus time’ rather than react reflexively and, ultimately less effectively, in real time.


    • It’s not multitasking, it’s serial tasking and it’s ultimately holding you back.
    • Methodically assess your business; create an overarching strategy and schedule time to wholeheartedly focus 100%.
    • Work on one piece (task) of business development at a time going deeply and completely.
    • Your business will run just fine without you reacting to and solving every problem in real time.


About FON

FON is a leading business development and consulting firm delivering customized solutions to integrative health organizations—focused on growing patient volume, program and product sales—driven by innovative marketing, messaging and branded storytelling, all rooted in fiscally viable business models that work.

Contact us today to schedule a complimentary 30-minute consultation to discuss your career strategy or business development needs.

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