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Two Approaches to Gardening

By February 22, 2016Advice, Business

My wife and I have two very different approaches to our garden.

My view of the garden is a series of tasks which need to be completed so that I can spend some time enjoying the sunshine outside, preferably with a glass of something and a small plate of cheese.

In Kathy’s view, the tasks themselves are the enjoyment. She refers to her garden (which is impressive, but I am biased) as her sandpit. Once the sandcastle has been built, no problem, knock it down and build another one. In summertime you will likely find her on the end of a hose, watering, whereas I have built an automatic reticulation system, which requires me to turn on a tap, then return to my glass and my cheese – she hates it.


There are a number of parallels we could draw here. A jogger doesn’t really care about where he is going, or about getting there, it is the act of jogging from which he or she derives the enjoyment – or so I’m told.

Don’t ever put a 1000 piece jigsaw in front of me, for me these king of puzzles are not about the doing, they are about the having done.

A friend of mine once was surprised to hear me complain about how stiff and sore I was after spending the weekend building a bridge. “How long have you been there? And you haven’t even finished the landscaping!” If only I had, and at times I thought I had, only to be persuaded that such and such a section needed opening up, or rebuilding, or swapping around – you get the picture.

My approach to my business is in direct contrast to my view of the garden. For me constant change is one of the stimulating things about being in business. Markets, regulations, customer needs, methods of doing stuff, technology are all continually changing, so to remain successful we have to always be tweaking, adjusting, developing, creating. If I had ever created the perfect business, with no need for future development, I would have sold it years ago, because where is the fun in just operating a business? For me it is all in the building.

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