1001 Business Bedtime stories… The seduction of the Hammer… Truth 1
Here follows another one of the “1001 Business Bedtime Stories” … Every story comes straight from the New Perspectives Small Business Bootcamp, stories of business and courage and they illustrate an aspect of one of Ten Truths… You might recognise some of them from your own experience.
Once upon a time… a long long time ago in a country not unlike Australia… Andrew was a builder…
Andrew had started his career in the building industry the same way many builders get their start, by doing a carpentry apprentice ship, becoming a full carpenter and at some point going out on his own, first as a carpentry contractor working for other builders and then slowly but surely taking on more and larger building jobs that incorporate other trades that are subcontracted to electricians, bricklayers, painters and the like.
Some years after having started out on his own, Andrew was working like a slave to his business. Because Andrew with his offsider carried out all of the carpentry and general building work on each of his jobs, Andrew had to be on site all day every day. Hence his day would start at 5am in the office, then on site from 7.00 am until 4 pm and then seeing clients and finally back in the office until 10 in the evening. Saturday was a workday as well and even Sundays were not normally work free.
Andrew wanted to Raise a Healthy Bouncy Business, with Raving Fan Customers, and a place where people enjoyed coming to work and be involved in something more than just making money and the opportunity to create a valuable asset for himself and his family.
But Andrew felt trapped by his business
“If I don’t spend most of the workday on site, I can’t ensure that things get done the way I want them to get done” was Andrew’s dilemma.
Andrew was tired.
Working in The Bootcamp with me, Andrew came to realise that continuing to be “the best man with a hammer this side of the Blue mountains”, might have been a good reason to get into business 5 years ago, but now he had to learn to resist “the seduction of the hammer”. Holding a hammer in his hands was not the best use of his time, his health or his braincells. it was time to let others take that hammer from him.
So he did… it took a lot of courage… but Andrew started by blocking 2 hrs every Tuesday and Thursday mornings from 7 am to 9.00 am in his diary as “Business development time” At this time he would not come to site and would not answer his phone at all.
At first Andrew felt guilty and anxious and as soon as 9 O’clock came he would race to site and try to make up for lost time but soon he started to notice that things went fine without him. He employed another carpenter to work with him and all his subbies and employees, and clients soon learnt that Andrew was not available at those times and managed fine.
This small change, consistently applied, was the key that got Andrew’s business unstuck and got Andrew on the way to creating something really special.
Now, 2 Years later, Andrew’s business is unrecognisable. Andrew rarely wears his toolbelt at all anymore these days. He likes to keep his hand in from time to time so he might do a set out for a staircase or hang a nice door every now and then but the rest of the time Andrew is building his business rather than building homes.
And what is more, the business has grown 30% and Andrew takes his son to soccer training on Tuesday nights.
And Andrew and his Business lived happily ever after… The End
Ask yourself… Where will you find the courage to make Profound things happen in your Business?
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