Management Matters

Bumbling Along? Want To Know The Success Secret Of The Top 10%

It's not hard to be in the top ten percent of the apiary business. 
There are plenty of people you can mimic or, better still, learn to be even better by learning from the best in other industries. You just have to be willing to put the effort into areas that may be uncomfortable for you. 

Think marketing, sales, influential leaders, etc. I have noticed that to be successful in the apiary industry, most don't need to be better beekeepers; you need to be a better business operator looking at all aspects of your business. 

You can learn from the best by reading their books, which distill their lifelong learnings for less than the price of a meal out. You could listen to suitable podcasts while in the truck or commit to a relevant webinar every week when the kids are down. There's a world of resources out there.

The problem is most of us stay in our comfort zone; to grow, you must get used to being comfortable with being uncomfortable. Growth happens when you start doing the things you’re not qualified to do.


Five factors that separate marvels from the moderate rest:


1    They are thinkers. 

They think before they act.

They also think without distraction. 

One famous example is Bill Gates, who created his own "Think Week" where he commits himself away from the world to think about things and read a ton of books.
On one of his Think Weeks, he worked out how much of a threat the Internet would be to Microsoft, so he got the company ready with cloud-based offerings. Without that intervention, the impact on Microsoft and its share price could have been very different.

The main theme is that, in order to navigate our complicated world, we need to take time to think and spend time on problems to come up with better solutions.

This validates Einstein's quote: 
"If I had an hour to solve a problem, I'd spend 55 minutes thinking about the problem and five minutes thinking about solutions."
Einstein believed the quality of the solution is in direct proportion to your ability to identify the problem you want to solve. So, ask yourself: How much time are you taking to think about things versus doing things?


2    They manage their time.

"When performance is measured, performance improves. When performance is measured and reported, the rate of improvement accelerates." - Thomas Monson. 
Time is all you have. You either invest it or let others spend it for you. 

When I mention systematic record-keeping and time diaries to apiary teams we train, I see a sense of dread appear on their faces. Why? Because they know how much time they're wasting and don't want to be held accountable. The worst put up any and all excuses not to have to record what they're doing. 

The truth is this: what you measure, you manage. Instead of doing the same thing year after year, one round after the next, what's more productive is once you have a baseline measurement of the status of the apiaries, start prioritizing the important over the urgent. There will always be urgent work.


3    They have a singular vision.

They know what they want. Because they know their destination, they know what they need to do to get there.

If you don't know where you're going, any road will take you there, which gets you nowhere.

When you use Google Maps, you enter a destination. You know the roads you need to take to get there or you don't.

The same applies to goal setting and targets. Writing them down and reminding yourself of them daily is vital so they stay at the forefront of your mind. Watching re-runs or binge-watching Netflix is not going to get you to where you want to go. You can choose a different course of action like reading, networking, or up-skilling outside of work.


4    They commit to continual learning and development.

When you stop learning, you stop growing. And that's when you start getting passed by and passed over. 

As the world changes and buyers become smarter in how they buy, you need to become more innovative in how you manage your business and sell your services. If not, you will lose more opportunities to those who have worked out what has changed.


5    They rest and recover. 

All high-performance athletes know they cannot perform at a high level without the right amount of rest and recovery. If they don't, they injure themselves and they're out of the game.

I have gotten close to burnout myself in the last few years but was fortunate enough to see the signs.

 My solution was simple: I took time to rest and re-set clear boundaries for myself and others. I diarized gym time as non-negotiable, Lights out time (so I got the 8hrs sleep I know I need), No-work weekends (I still make sure my week is a full working week but realized I need those two days to recharge and refuel to perform at my best during the working week). 

None of us are robotic machines who can work day in, day out. Make sure you take the time to rest and recover if you want to perform at a high standard.

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