“You reap what you sow. If you go through life sowing seeds of inconsistency, shortcuts, compromises, and minimum effort, then you shouldn’t be surprised when you reap a banquet of mediocrity. You are responsible for your decisions, actions, and results; therefore, if you do not like what you are reaping, quit blaming the world, and start sowing something else.”
by Dave Anderson
Responsibility is the cornerstone of great leadership. When we take responsibility for our present circumstances, we hand ourselves the control to change those circumstances. We begin to sow the seeds of success.
It is easy to look for something or someone to blame for poor performance. It is as easy for leaders to do this as it is for salespeople, but this behaviour will never make us wealthy.
In some businesses, blaming clients for not buying is an Olympic sport. I hear leaders blame their teams for not doing actions that lead to results, but when I ask, “What are you doing about it?” you quickly see that the leader doesn’t want to risk conflict and so prefers to complain about the problem rather than taking action to correct it.
Why did you go into agency management in the first place? To whine and complain, or to take control of your future?
- Did you go into business to hand over control to a dominating bullying peak performer who threatens to leave if you make any changes?
- Did you go into business to hand over control to a team of mediocre plodders?
- Did you go into business to struggle and worry about money?
- Did you go into business to allow it to enslave you, leaving you no time to do the things you love?
- Did you go into business to cruise and plod?
- Did you go into business to get the results you are currently getting?
Ok, agency management may be harder than we first thought, but when we change our thoughts and our actions, we change the outcome – we get different results. Dave Anderson is right when he says that sowing the seeds of inconsistency, shortcuts, compromises and minimum effort leads to mediocrity, but it does not have to be this way.
We can set goals and plan a direction for our businesses. We can work with our teams, hiring the right people, and training them to achieve the standards we set. We can remove the wrong people from our teams. We can take control and drive our businesses to the profit goal of our choosing. We can sow the seeds of success.
Yes, it’s hard work, but nothing is as hard as a life of mediocrity.
Personally, I’d rather work hard on building a great business than working hard to save my company from bankruptcy.
What about you: what seeds are you going to sow?