How Pruning Produces Results
Recently I went home to southern California to visit my mother who is 89. It’s been a number of years since I’ve been home, and she was excited to show me her roses, which were blooming profusely. She explained how she prunes them back every year to ensure that she gets the best roses by reducing the number of buds that are formed. I was reminded of the similar process for fruit trees—that by pruning them annually to eliminate the water sprouts, nonfruit-producing growth, the trees will yield more fruit. Less is more in roses, fruit trees, and our businesses.
As business owners we need to constantly prune our commitments and eliminate the non-essential activities as well as those that produce little value. Such things distract us and prevent us from performing at our highest potential. In other words, we have to do less to produce more. When we say no to more things, we can say yes to the right things.
For some reason, perhaps our addiction to busyness, we can get caught up doing the trivial many rather than the vital few. Remember it is better to move three things a mile than a 100 things a few inches. Focus on the few things that will have the greatest impact or results on your business.
In my work with clients we will sometimes create a stop-doing list—a list of things that are not the highest and best use of time. It might be time for you to create your own stop-doing list. Take some time to consider the 20 percent of your activities that produce the greatest return on your investment of time. You may be like many business owners who are caught up in the 80 percent rather than the 20 percent that will grow the business and take it to another level. The 80 percent will dilute your effectiveness. Intense focus on the 20 percent is required to maximize results.
Stop minimizing your results by trying to do everything. If you need help learning how to focus your time, energy, and money to maximize your return on investment, call us at 503-312-3145. We are experts at improving bottom-line results.