Building From The Frame InPosted: May 1, 2012
Each family vacation I work a jigsaw puzzle with Sabrina, my sister-in-law and fellow in the Making-Order-of-Things Society. First we turn all of the pieces face up, then we find the four corners and assemble the edge pieces. After we’ve completed the puzzle’s frame, we work our way in from the outside, sometimes deviating to build clusters around similar colors and patterns. We snap a photo of the finished puzzle to prove our effort, and then crumble the pieces back into the box.
Last summer’s holiday in Charleston, NC fell in the middle of a spree of clients planning for 2012. My mind wasn’t yet on vacation when we started our puzzle, so an analogy was born: just as it’s nearly impossible to work a puzzle without first assembling its frame, so it is difficult to build a business without defined framework. How else do you know where to put the other puzzle pieces?
You, and everyone around you – leaders, employees, customers, and vendors – should know the answers to these four questions:
o What do you do?
o What do hope to accomplish by doing it?
o What principles guide you?
o What will you focus on this year to further your business?
The answers to these questions are the corner pieces of your business’ puzzle. Get clear about these, and every move thereafter becomes easier and more effective.