I live in California's Great Central Valley – a huge agricultural region that runs the entire length of California.
The farmers around here produce billions of dollars of produce every year – fruit, nuts, vegetables, etc.
As I was driving around recently, I looked over the endless fruit orchards and got to thinking about the difference between farming and hunting as it relates to business development for architects.
A farmer prepares the ground, then plants the seed and gives that seed what it needs to grow and produce fruit – water, nutrients and sunlight.
After a time, the farmer can then harvest the produce of that effort.
The hunter on the other hand has a tougher job.
The hunter travels to a location where the target game is found and must find the prey.
In the game of business development, word-of-mouth is like farming.
After doing good work for a period of time, past clients will refer you.
This process is slow but steady, and these referrals usually turn out to be good clients.
However, there are scenarios where simply waiting for word-of-mouth (farming) doesn't work.
Farming takes time.
If you're getting hungry right now, you'd be silly to wait around until next year to get the fruit you need. You'd die of starvation first.
The best bet for a quick bite is to load up that bow and arrow or rifle and hunt yourself some dinner.
Similarly, if you're a new architecture firm without a long list of past clients, you'll need something else to supplement your diet other than referrals and word of mouth.
Or perhaps your current pipeline is down or you want to get different kinds of projects.
All of these require a hunting approach.
So what I'd have you consider today is this: where in your architecture firm are you waiting for the farming to kick in, where you should be doing some hunting?
If you'd like some help developing a farming and hunting strategy for your firm, then go register (click here) for my next DREAM Practice online training.
On that free training I go over strategies for hunting and farming so you can bring in the kind of food you need now.
Enoch Bartlett Sears