I call this "Objective Overload." This past weekend, elder statesman and retired Gen. Colin Powell cautioned the Obama administration about the dangers of pursuing too many objectives. He knows that the probability of success decreases as the number of strategic objectives increases. The administration is trying to solve a financial crisis, address energy issues, and reform health care and immigration while increasing federal spending at an unsustainable clip and adding to a staggering deficit littered with unfunded programs like Social Security and Medicare. And these are only the domestic issues. We're also fighting two wars and have at least two rogue states that are actively pursuing or have developed nuclear weapons and have threatened to use them against us or close allies. It seems the administration is attempting to do everything in the hopes that something gets done. Even if you end up targeting all the right objectives, your strategy can fail if you target too many of them. An example in the business world is Google ( GOOG). Scott Moritz wrote a great column on July 1 about several problems facing the tech giant and why it's a sell. He quoted the CFO as saying that Google is working on "big, complicated problems, building solutions for decades." That says to me that it's trying to boil the ocean, and that's a recipe for trouble. Google is into everything from smartphones to movies to Internet voice calling to you name it. Contrast this strategy with Apple ( AAPL). Steve Jobs and company tend to focus on one big thing at a time, making sure they get it right. They think it through, making sure the product is intuitive and one that they themselves would use: Mac, iPod, iPhone. Huge successes, timed perfectly, not a bunch of ideas thrown at the wall.