Watching the Snooker World Championships recently, I was struck by the precision with which the best players pot the ball and have the cue ball then travel perfectly into position for the next shot. And the next shot. And the next shot. And the next. And so on.

They build a break in their mind, seeing several shots ahead… sometimes being able to see many, many, many shots ahead. And they execute those shots with precision.

Chess Grand Masters are the same. They don’t just move a piece, or even just make the move that allows them to capture one of the opposing pieces. They look several moves in advance, at all the possible permutations and combinations. The very best can compute all the options for a game within the first few moves.

Successful business people must have a similar mindset. It’s about action… not just for now, but for where it leads to. At a strategic level, where a decision and action lead to, what the consequences are. At a tactical level, the opportunities uncovered by doing/ not doing something. And operationally, how each action has an impact – an effect. And what that then leads on to.

In business, it’s not just about winning the sale. Or gaining one new client. It’s bigger than that. Always.

That’s what sets apart the World Champions and the Grand Masters.

Professional Snooker players know it. Chess Grand Masters know it.

It’s what will set you apart too.