How Smooth Is Your Business Sailing Along

Writen by Stuart Crawford

Have you ever been sailing on a beautiful summer's day, the wind perfect, the water ideal? But when you look around, you notice there were a number of other sailboats, with their sails as full as yours, but some are much faster, and you feel like you are standing still!

You look around and find your anchor is running along the bottom of the marina. You were still moving forward, but no where near the speed as the other sailboats out that day.

Is this happening to your business? Are your sails full of great opportunities? Is your competition passing you by? Does your business lack the momentum to get you out to the open water?

Many businesses are dragging their anchor. What do I mean by "dragging their anchor"? This anchor can refer to employees who just don't have what is takes to be successful in your business line or are the type of employee who brings down the rest of the team. The anchor stops or slows down your momentum in your company.

Having employees on your team who consistently challenge the corporation in a positive manner is a good thing! They keep your company competitive in the marketplace. However having an employee or group of employees who weigh down your company in a negative manner, is something you need to act upon.

Negative employees can knock the wind out of your company's sails! The team members who fill your company's sails daily, with great ideas and forward momentum will soon become tired and lack the energy, required to move your sailboat forward. Eventually these same employees will find an easier boat to blow their powerful wind into, while your anchors will continue to slow down your progress.

Many organizations continue to work on developing their anchors instead of harvesting the wind that blows into their sails. Anchors will always be anchors, and they may have moments of promise in transforming into a sail, BUT the trend is, they almost always revert back to being an anchor. A good read on this topic is a book titled "If You Don't Make Waves, You'll Drown" by Dave Anderson. One of the book's lessons is, many of today's leaders spend the majority of their time on the non-performers, instead of their performers. Again, continuing with this practice will have your performers looking for another stage to perform on.

Can you imagine a sailboat with no sails and all anchors? Business owners need to remove the anchors or at least secure your anchors onto your sailboat and focus on the sails in your organization. Sails do not need a lot of effort, however, they do need attention, regular support, and care.

Harvest the winds in your company so you can have full sails to allow you to compete in the marketplace and keep pace, ahead of your competition.

Stuart R. Crawford is the Director of Business Development, at IT Matters Inc. (, a Microsoft Gold Partner, Small Business Specialist and Microsoft IMPACT Award Finalist 2005 - Network Infrastructure Solution of the Year. Stuart is also a certified coaching practioner with execuCoach International ( He can be reached at


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