This is the second in a series of two posts. The first post was Cultivate Your Career Like Your Lawn or Garden. I am extremely fortunate to live in a neighbourhood in downtown Toronto that has many well-maintained parks, lawns and gardens. This time of year, many people devote much of their free time and energy to weeding, watering and pruning their lawns and gardens. It not only provides them with healthy doses of solitude and relaxation but also inspires others like me to create our own gardens. I have a large porcelain container filled with soil that I have decided to convert into an herb and vegetable garden. This container used to hold a rather large tree but it has sat empty for several years and now it’s time to fill it with a cheerful array of plants. As I have been deciding on the types of herbs and vegetables to include in my garden, it has made me think that you can cultivate your business in the same way that you cultivate your lawn or garden.
If you have a lawn or garden, you know that there are parts that seem to be magically abundant with little or no maintenance, parts that need gentle care and coaxing in order to flourish and yet other parts that stubbornly refuse to make any progress and you are left scratching your head wondering what to do next. You can look at your clients/customers in the same way. There are those who are low maintenance who require little or no attention and will call you when they need you; those who are medium maintenance in that they need more time and attention and still others that consistently require a high level of maintenance. Have you ever noticed that some of your high maintenance clients/customers take a lot of your time and energy and deliver very little in return in terms of revenue, reputation or appreciation? It is often your low and medium maintenance clients/customers that provide the highest return on your investment of time, money and energy. How would you like to cultivate your business this summer so that you can reap an abundant harvest in the fall? Are you looking to expand your network of contacts, explore new sources of income, attract new clients/customers and get more business from existing clients/customers? How can you cultivate your business like your lawn or garden? The answer is simple. Apply the same focus, discipline, creativity, consistency and commitment to excellence to your business and to your clients/customers that you do with your lawn or garden. Remember you are who you surround yourself with whether it’s a lush lawn, growing garden or consistently contented clients/customers.