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Sheering Sheep in Measured Time


   A wise businessman gave me the greatest advice several years ago about selling. He told me, “you can shear a sheep many times; you can only skin it once”. He was a small business owner who sold real estate and had other businesses. His motto stemmed from his experience with building repeat customers who received a fair deal for a smaller profit. He knew that in measured time that earning a single customer through integrity and who returned over and over was better than scorching someone for a bundle over one deal.

   Sheep ranchers who specialize in selling wool know the long-term value of shearing sheep. Selling wool is not as lucrative as slaughtering a sheep and selling the meat, but in the long run it makes more sense. Success in life is more like shearing sheep over time. Most millionaires become millionaires over a lifetime through routine, frugality and repetition. We see exceptions, but most successful businesses are born and built over time.

   Learning and teaching patience and perseverance in building success and wealth are noble lessons. It is hard to resist those ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ deals; but more often than not, they don’t pan out. Plowing one row after another is the only way to plant a successful crop. Not all the seeds will sprout, but through discipline and duplicity we will have some grain to harvest.

   Shearing sheep in measured time means we will have to postpone gratification and live more humbly, but we know that when we harvest the wool that keeps others warm, we are able to keep soup in our pots and wood on our fire.



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