Business lessons from the garden

What a year for gardening!  Just when it threatens to get too hot, a thunderstorm shows up and showers the sun-soaked flowers and vegetables.  My garden loves it!  But elsewhere in town, the heavy rains have submerged tomatoes and petunias…a soggy end to this year’s crop.

That’s the thing about gardening.  It can be rewarding and spiritually uplifting.  It can inspire you with its beauty and bounty.  Or, it can disappoint you beyond words.  It can humble you, until you feel as low as the soil.

Most years, I put in a garden.  Each year, I have been humbled.  However, this year, I am
offto a rockin’ start.  This year I feel like the Fine Gardening Cover Girl.  I have beets, cabbage, squash, and tomatoes.  All kinds of herbs.  The potatoes are almost ready, and my asparagus is three years old, so we’ve been eating lots of asparagus.  This year I am delighted.  Unlike the last few years, when weeds, bugs and my lack of attention doomed my plants to oblivion.

All you need to know about business, you can learn in the garden.  The garden is a metaphor for life in general, business in particular.  Here are a few Biz Lessons from the Garden:

  1. Put a Plan together.  Draw it up.  Research companion planting.  Do a little study and you will have a much better garden – and business – than if you just hoped and prayed.  It’s more rewarding to set an intention and co-create it, too!
  2. 15 minutes a day beats 2 hours once a week.  Do a little bit everyday.  In fact, just walk out there and look at the garden.  It will make its needs known, if you just pay attention.  It takes time to create a garden.  You can’t hold off until August to plant your tomatoes.  You can’t neglect the garden for weeks, and then hope to catch up by pulling an all-nighter.  Take a few minutes everyday to touch base with your employees, and your customers.  Look over the numbers.  Pay attention.
  3. There will be weeds, but there will be unexpected heroes as well.  Weeds are inevitable, and no big deal if you stay after them.   It’s easy to pluck the little suckers, or knock the legs out from under them.  Find and handle problems when they are little, before they choke the life out of your business.  And appreciate the serendipitous appearance of an unexpected hero.   Isn’t it wonderful to discover a patch of sunflowers, volunteering from last years scattered seeds?  How about hiring Suzy to be your receptionist and discovering she has excelle