Why do people put things off all the time? Why are the biggest tasks always left till last? In fact why more often than not, do things never even get started, despite the knowledge that getting them done will make a change for the better?
The reason, I believe, is that invariably when people come to face up to what needs to be done, they see such an enormous task in front of them, that it simply seems insurmountable, and therefore easier and safer perhaps, not to start.
So this is why we talk about eating the elephant one slice at a time. It is simply not possible to put the whole thing in in one mouthful, and of course the thought of even trying to do that would be ludicrous. The “elephant” can be anything in your life, shifting a huge pile of bricks, digging an enormous hole, or in the cases that I deal with, getting control back into your business.
Very often when I start working with business owners, once we have sat down and analysed what the issues are, and what needs to change, it can seem rather daunting, and indeed almost too much to know where to start. But the key is to at least make a start with little things here and there. Put one or two simple systems in place, bring in one or two monetary controls, and start monitoring things like where leads are coming from, and how many on a daily basis. Keep chipping away, bit by bit, and you will start to see changes happen, not only in the success of the business, but also in the way your team start to re-act to the changes and start to become more focused and professional. So as you start to eat the elephant slice by slice, suddenly you will find that a whole leg has gone, and you can start to work on more fundamental issues, such as an organisational structure and cash flow.
The little changes add up to make big differences, and the big changes, even bigger differences. Suddenly the “elephant” is not so intimidating after all, and you will find that all things are possible.
So next time you are thinking this is all too much, I’ll never get it done, make a start with a small change, and you’ll be amazed at what you can achieve.