You are the captain of your ship, and the enemy is bearing down on you. It’s your responsibility to defend the ship and protect your crew. Your supplies of gunpowder are limited.
You order your gunner to load up the big cannon, take aim and fire at the oncoming ship. You miss by 40 degrees. You order the gunner to reload and take aim again, but he reports that there is not enough gunpowder left. The enemy ship moves in and destroys your boat. It’s game over for you and your crew!
Now instead, suppose that you had asked the gunner to aim with a rifle instead, he uses a tiny amount of gunpowder, takes aim and fires. Like the first time, he misses by 40 degrees. You order him to reload and aim again. He misses by 30 degrees. He reloads and aims again, this time missing by 10 degrees. He reloads and finally hits the enemy ship.
The tiny bullet does no damage, but now your gunner has his sights in.
You ask him to load up the big cannon. You still only have enough gunpowder for one shot. But this time your cannonball crashes through the enemy ship. Sinking it, leaving you victorious on the battlefield.
You have saved your ship and the lives of your crew.
The choices you make in life will define your outcomes. Resources are always limited, make sure you fire bullets first and only use the big cannon once you are sure you are onto a winner.
Together, we climb the mountain, not in giant leaps but one small step at a time.
This blog was inspired by the Jim Collins book, Great by Choice, which I recommend you read if you are interested in growing a business.