Petes Weekly: Stalking, Trapping And Farming…

Stalking, Trapping and Farming…

Long before you and I, our ancestors survived by hunting. Without knowing it, their efforts were divided into two broad arenas.
Either they trapped their food by placing nets and traps in the pathways and rivers that their food used to commute to work. This was seasonal at best. Which meant that they had a few full tummy months followed by some very lean seasons.
The other method of hunting was stalking, working out where bigger animals might be, getting a few hungry Neanderthals together, and chasing the prey equipped with rocks and sharp sticks. This too was seasonal, but these nomadic groups didn’t have to worry about BMW payments and labour laws. If somebody died on the job, one of his mates would marry his friend’s ex, often because the mates own wife had recently died during a lean season.
We know very little of this time because there wasn’t enough wealth for people to learn to write, it was a hand to mouth existence, in many respects like the life we small business owners lead.
And this is the way we lived for most of the history of mankind. At some point, around 7000 BC in the case of Egypt, a few folk began farming for their food.
Farming means spending time looking after a crop or a herd. It means working in seasons. Early farmers learned that in order for a crop to grow by the end of summer, they needed to put some seeds into the ground in early spring. And once the harvest was over, they learned that it might be useful to keep a few seeds for next spring. This new approach is the basis for the way we live now. It was a very good thing.
There is a direct parallel to marketing and selling. Marketing is the planting of seeds a while before the harvest. Selling is what you do to harvest the marketing seeds. (Selling is also what you do as you stalk and trap, but it is much harder work for far less certain results.)
Yet we all want to harvest without doing the up front work. And we leave it so late that we need a bumper harvest, often so late that we do not have any seeds left to plant.
Most of us small business owners do not even consider the concept of farming (of preparing a field and planting the seed) because we are too busy stalking and trapping. Most of our stories are not written down, other than in big books at the local courthouse. The very few success stories that make any news are truly exceptional, and lead us all to think that everyone makes it like Richard Branson (Which is one of the reasons your workers think you are rich.)
Most of us are more like Dave van der Vyver than Richard Branson. (Never heard of Dave? My point exactly.)

All the best
Peter Carruthers

Foe more information please contact Peter at this email address

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