Are You Planting Seeds?

Article by Kristine CareyThe best way to get your business to grow is to plant seeds — seems obvious, right? Seeds of ideas in prospective clients’ minds, seeds of opportunity with institutions that could use your services, seeds of relationship with like-minded souls that could grow into something good for you, personally and professionally. You may be thinking, “Yes, of course, I know that,” and I know you do. And yet, I see really great business people not planting consistent seeds and suffering the consequences.

Planting seeds takes intention, time and energy, and follow-through. Let’s look at each of these a bit deeper.

Planting Seeds Takes Intention
When you plant seeds in the garden, chances are you don’t just open the seed packet and fling it around (although I’ve done that and it’s kinda fun). Chances are you spend some time thinking about what you’d like to plant, where, and what end result you’re looking for, with all of this supporting your overall intention. Having a strong intention makes the planning easier and keeps you on track as you take the necessary actions.

Planting Seeds Takes Time & Energy
Once you have your intention and plan, it’s time to plant the seeds. This may mean things like networking, having coffee with new business acquaintances, reconnecting with colleagues, writing articles, making cold calls, joining a business development group, teaching classes, taking out an ad, or joining the Chamber of Commerce. There are many ways to plant seeds, and the way you plant them needs to be specific to you and your Super Powers. (Not sure what your Super Powers are? Check out this tool.)

Planting Seeds Takes Follow-Through
You’ve got a plan and you’ve planted the seeds. Now the trick is to follow through. Tend the seeds by giving them water, attention, pulling out the weeds, and making sure they get enough light. Set up a reminder to make it easy — my dad uses the back of envelopes. Lately I’ve been using the Book Yourself Solid version of Contactually and really like it; you can check it out here. (This is not an affiliate link; I get nothing except good karma by sharing it.) Whatever your method, all your hard work of intention and planting will be for naught if there is no follow-through.

An Example
To share with you what I mean, here’s an example from my business this year.

I set the intention to grow the coaching side of my business and to develop more fully the speaking side of my business.

Time and Energy, Follow-Through
Coaching: I joined a local chapter of the networking group BNI, and got back in touch with a lot of former colleagues, some who I hadn’t spoken with in many years. Now I’m watering the seeds by staying in touch, and I continue to look for opportunities to go deeper with those around me.

Speaking: I planted seeds by telling colleagues I was looking for more speaking engagements, as well as ramped up my involvement with Toastmasters.

All this has resulted in two new clients, two returning clients, a host of new referral partners and a potential business opportunity. Speaking-wise, I’ve gotten three new engagements, kept my ongoing commitment with the Small Business Administration and have been invited to be a guest speaker at a local University’s coaching class. The other result is my confidence that the seeds I’ve planted will continue to grow as long as I continue to water them, giving me even more of what I want over time. Not bad for 6 months of gardening, eh?

What seeds are you planting? What can you plant today that will sprout over the year to come? Take a few moments to look at your seeds, you’ll be glad you did!

Related Topics

View more answers by this author or in related categories.

Subscribe via email, and we'll send you each new answer when it's posted -- no more than one per week, and your address will never be shared.

Apr 13, 2018: Get It Written Day

Get It Written Day

Join C.J. Hayden for a one-day virtual writing retreat for business owners! You’ve got important stuff to write. Let C.J. help you get it done. Work on your blog posts, articles, or book with coaching and peer support. Find out more

Write a Comment

Take a moment to comment and tell us what you think. Some basic HTML is allowed for formatting.

Reader Comments

Be the first to leave a comment!