Conscious-Business.org.uk

A home for the Conscious Business community in the UK

Sitting in the long grass

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It’s that long grass time of year. That is, when the grass isn’t cut to 3 inches it can grow up to 3 feet or more. Great for sitting in and contemplating.

Somebody once said to me “enjoy nature”. And I think I know what he meant – relish it, absorb it, study it, let it overcome you. Nature has great lessons to teach. One is that anything important works on a long cycle.

Sitting in the long grass just now I was also reminded that business is a long game. I went to a course at the Sloan School of Management at MIT once and remember hearing someone say they surveyed a vast number of business startups and were surprised to discover that the average time from startup to being what they called a “mature business” was something like 18 years. Ok it might have been 16. But a very long time.

Much longer than I think many people appreciate when they start something up. Or when they try to change a business. I also heard today that while 2007 was the year of people learning about climate change, 2008 seems to be a year of people forgetting it again. Maybe this sustainability thing is just a passing fad?

But, as the people behind the Clock of the Long Now, and other interesting projects (I particularly like the Long Bets idea), are trying to point out, sustainability is a long game. The planet and nature work on long cycles.

It also takes time to develop a business strategy that will take you where you want to go. It takes time to implement it successfully. Sometimes a very long time.

So why not start now?

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Author: Pete Burden

Asking good questions in a complex world to help people navigate, learn & grow #Coaching #Leadership #ActionLearning #OD Projects & businesses with #SocialValue

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