The bottom line in business is achieving goals. This requires, first of all, the definition of the goals. Clear goals must be written, and quantified with numbers and dates. This is necessary so that you can Measure your Performance according to the Plan.
"If you can't Measure it, you can't Manage it."
If you can't manage it, you are out of control.
Success in business is a lot like flying an airplane:
you MUST be in control, at all times.
You are either in control, or out of control.
There is no middle ground.
And it can change in an instant.
So it requires Focus.
Focus on the feedback that we get
from continuous measurements of performance against the plan.
The question then becomes whether we measure our performance against fixed (arbitrary, management created goals)) standards or relative (previous performance). Which is better?
Startup Compass scores again with this very thought provoking article summarizing some of their research on success in business: