Over the years I have gained important insights from one of my mentors, Jim Rohn. With Spring 2011 season wrapping up I thought it would be a great time to share his perspectives.
Jim Rohn was a renowned author and motivational speaker, known for his rags-to-riches story. Born to a farming family in Idaho, he learned the value of hard work and personal responsibility. He said, “You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself.” He also recognized that seasons occur not only in nature, but in life and business as well.
Rohn always started his description of the four seasons with winter, because that is the time we prepare for. There will be times of decreased activity, fewer prospects, and dormant projects. If you’ve acted like the proverbial ant, instead of the grasshopper, you have worked hard for this time and have stores available to continue doing business. You take stock, evaluate, increase your knowledge, and create a plan for the coming seasons, because you know that spring is coming.
Spring is when opportunities arise. There are times when business will be booming. Every contact, every question, every lead is an opportunity. Just as the farmer takes advantage of the increasing warmth and times his tillage and planting accordingly, business owners have to take advantage of every opportunity. Spring is not the time to rest, but to commit to preparing the soil for the best success in future business. Have a sense of urgency!
As summer comes, the farmer pays close attention to his crops: feeding, watering, and eliminating pests and weeds that could inhibit growth. In the summer of your business, you have to pay attention to the individuals or businesses that are the heart of your business. Focus on your ideal clients and prospects- stay "Top of Mind". Nourish those relationships, and take care of any barriers to future growth. Focus on building value and customer service. Cast a vision for your business.
Fall is harvest time, but only if you’ve put in the work during the spring and summer. If you’ve planted good seed and cultivated those relationships, maybe even taking a risk or two, your harvest will be bountiful. Your attitude and your willingness to stick to your values and your commitment to your clients and customers is going to give you reason for celebration. So celebrate!
An ancient Greek philosopher noted that “The only constant is change.” Although you can’t control the economic climate, you know that it will change, as will your business. It is up to you to work with the seasons of business, and make it successful.
How can you apply the understanding of the four seasons for your businesses greater prosperity?