Have you ever heard of the term “rainmaker?” It’s used a lot in business for someone who is a producer – someone who makes things happen – gets the job done. The term came from Native Americans who had medicine men who would seek to cause rain on the crops by performing various rituals. I thought about this term recently as I launched a new service for my business. In order for the service to be sold to the marketplace it has to be high value and in demand, and I have to let people know about it so they can make an informed decision on whether to buy it.
I want it to rain on my “crops” – I want people to buy my service. However, at the end of the day there are some things that are in my control and some things that aren’t. For the crops to grow there are some natural elements that I simply can’t do anything about – rain is one of them. Rain is needed for plants to grow but mother nature may or may not cooperate. What DO I have control over? I have control over the soil prep, digging, planting, and weeding – I call this “spade work.” What things are in my control with a new business or product launch?
Product or service production, marketing prep and activities, and sales activities like getting out and talking to people. Same with finding a new job – we have things in our control like consistently identifying and contacting hiring managers, setting up interviews, building trust in interviews, following up, etc. With a business, I don’t have final control over whether someone will buy. As a jobseeker, I don’t have final control over whether a hiring managers says yes.
As a farmer, I don’t have final control over when it will rain. HOWEVER, if I’m doing all of the spade work necessary for a goal then I can feel confident that I’ve done my part and not worry about the rest. If we fret about the rain then we’re worrying about things unnecessarily. Eventually the rain comes and the crops grow. Eventually someone buys the product after enough improvements are made. Eventually someone hires us after we’ve talked to enough people.
Our job is to do our part – to do our best and then unload the bag of rocks that we worry about. If we make an honest self-assessment and we’re not weeding enough (calling new prospective employers), or not fertilizing enough (engaging in consistent networking activities), etc, then commit to do a little more. It’s amazing the feeling of power we can get when we are confident we are doing all that we can for a goal to be achieved.
By contrast, I don’t like that uneasy feeling that I get when I know I need to be a little more consistent or try a little harder. One thing that holds us back from being more consistent with our activities is discouragement. Discouragement leads to lack of action. The best remedy for this is to find something super easy to do that will get the train moving again.
For example, if you’re overwhelmed because you think you need to contact 10 new hiring managers, pare that down to 1 – just make one call, and then go get some ice cream. Keep your action simple, and consistent.
Consistent action is the key – small steps lead to larger steps and big results. When you’re consistently doing all that you can do, you can sleep easy at night waiting for those drops of rain to start.