Cat-spinning & butterfly herding

They're holding you back. And what to do about it.

You know how you do one thing and something else immediately kicks off? Call it plate-spinning, the butterfly effect, herding cats. We've got plenty of names for it but it doesn't make the busy-ness of business any easier. It actually makes it feel like a fact of life, something that's ok to endure and that's worse.

Once the thrill of the chase wears off, busy-ness can be exhausting.

It's happening everywhere

So why am I saying what everyone already knows? Because I see it happening everywhere in the working world around me. Sure there's always going to be a degree of cat-spinning and butterfly-herding in business. But there's also straightforward stuff that can be done which has an effect on every aspect of the way businesses work. And it's what I've spent 20 years learning about (the hard way). Branding.


An example in hiring

Yesterday I was chatting with another business owner about the challenges facing her team. Their immediate problem seemed to be recruiting another director to share the plate-spinning. But in talking we exposed a bigger problem. One of communicating vision and purpose; making their 'reason why' a portable idea to inspire their audience.


The problem

Without a clear expression of 'why' they were focusing on the role, the job description that would make everything alright. But past experience in hiring had shown that unless people understand and have ownership of vision and purpose it's hard for them to take full, high-level responsibility. And they become a burden rather than an asset.


The answer

So we talked about what we know, what's unique about the business and compelling about it's offering. The result? We've created a condensed, elegant expression their 'why'. One that is inspiring, intriguing and we hope, meaningful. This idea will now be tested to ensure that it is compelling and portable; an idea that can be shared widely and inspire the right kind of people to see themselves in the business at the highest level. 

Not a bad effort for a (long) lunchtime.



Note: It's worth pointing out that I've known this business for a while now so I have some advantageous inside knowledge of the brand. That said, the time for the conversation was right and the thought process flowed quickly with a positive outcome.


P.s. If you'd like an objective view of your business and its brand – it starts with a chat. How about we meet up for a coffee?


P.p.s. If you don't believe branding influences every part of your business I dare you to prove me wrong – but you're paying for the coffee!