When I first started teaching, I was very focused on the content of lectures, on what I was going to say. In my second year, when I had more of a handle on this, my attention migrated to how the students were getting on with it. By the third year, I became increasingly obsessed with levels of warmth and oxygen in the room.
Similarly, in preparation for performance situations, like many people, my attention starts off on the content - in musical contexts, learning the notes and words, in comedic ones, developing the material. Until I've got a grip on the what, I don't have very much attention available for the how.
But I have also seen performances where the performer is far more focused on the act of performing, of connecting with an audience than on the content. The technique/material was quite ordinary, even mediocre, but the audience feels good about it because the performer is really focused on making them feel good.