Deer hunting & business…
Well…here I sit. The last day of deer season in Virginia. And the last day of my first season of hunting! The best thing that happened was I got a buck on my first day out. The worst thing that happened was…I got a buck on my first day out! Aren’t you supposed to get one everytime you go?!? Uhhhh…no. Ten hunts and 100 pieces of gear later, I haven’t seen a thing!
I think the deer have already migrated to San Juan Capistrano for the year. Or are those the birds that do that? Either way, sitting in the sub-freezing temps, bundled up, looking like a Michelin tree, I thought I’d ponder on how hunting and business are similar.
Hunting, I believe, comes down to a few key things: Preparation, practice and patience. What gives me the right or credibility to even write a post like this? I’m going off of a few grand with Wilcox Bait & Tackle, Bass Pro & Cabelas. As well as watching continuous re-runs on Sportsman Channel & Outdoor Network! Doesn’t that count for something?
To hunt, one has to be prepared before they just go out into the woods. Scouting, trail cam analysis, the right clothing, weapon, scent control, knowing the wind direction, knowledge of the regulations and thinking of anything else you’d need for you adventure before you leave are all important. Each one of those are minimum requirements to succeed.
In business, you have to be prepared financially, physically (staffing), mentally (know your business, competitors) and emotionally. You have to prepare your facility, staff and systems as well. You don’t open a Subway without sandwich artists, knowing the menu and how to make a sub. One must prepare.
Practice makes perfect. Kinda. I’ve heard only “perfect practice makes perfect.” Either way, practice makes you better. Every hunt is a game day experience. A day without a successful harvest is practice for the next one. A hunter must practice on the range with their weapon. A wounded animal isn’t a good thing. To me, practice is all about what I learned. And in this sport, I’m learning a ton right now!
Practicing your profession isn’t any different. Are you role playing with your team? Are their word tracks and systems being executed with minimal errors? Are you sitting on the front lines every so often to keep up with your industry? The marketplace is constantly changing. We must continually practice to be successful.
Patience. Goodness gracious! This is the hardest thing in the world for me. I love buying the gear! Or going to the range and shooting! But when it comes to sitting out in the elements for hours..trusting in your prep and practice…that’s tough. But it’s the name of the game with hunting. If you sit in the woods long enough, you’ll eventually see something. I hope. 🙂
In your business, you have to have patience with your people, strategy, marketing and customers. You can only make the plans. You can’t make them buy. Sometimes it just takes patience before that 10-point monster buck walks in or walks by and wants to engage with you.
As you begin 2016, I encourage you to consider how much preparation, practice and patience you have done or plan to do? Your success depends on it! Happy hunting! I’m going back to dream about the chance to let out a, “MEEEH!” Then a BANG! And then a, “Sssssmoked him! Yeah, baby!”