( dw 12 April 2011 This post seems to have lost an intro, which I believe would have gone somewhat as follows:

When I was working once on a national program for education and the arts, I was lobbying the chairman of a powerful research funding body for some money for research into education and the arts. He did not say no, nor did he say yes. He said, “first you must ask a manageable question.” )

At first I thought, ok, that shouldn’t be too hard. In practice, I found then and subsequently that it’s quite a challenge to ask worthwhile questions which are also “manageable”, which I interpreted to mean being able to be translated into a plan of action with some reasonable prospect of successful, or at least useful, outcomes.

Further down the track and a few years after I moved into the field of home based business, I was in conversation with a colleague from the USA, who asked a question which at the time I considered somewhat frivolous, mainly because of the way it was phrased, but a question which has resonated with me down the seven or eight years since it was put to me. The question was? Simple: “Are you running a business, or running around?”

It’s so easy to be very busy about our business and still to miss out on achieving the success we desire for the business and for ourselves.

And because we work for ourselves, it’s not so difficult to make excuses for ourselves. Well, I worked so hard, I made lots of calls, I did a lot of networking, etc etc. And even if we give ourselves a hard time about that, the very fact of being in a home based business, working for oursleves, means that we miss out on the more objective scrutiny of our work by others – supervisors, colleagues – that might in another life (corporate, government) have given us a better reflection of external reality and kept us more down to earth.
I like the idea of writing some more about this in this blog. I’m much more focused on outcomes these days and much less given to “running around”, but there’s still plenty to do in terms of “running a business”

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