I just finished a book titled The Power of Habit. As some of you know, I have had more than my share of epiphanies. Most would argue that is because the obvious has a way of escaping me from time to time. Regardless, this was one of those rare books that caused a few epiphanies and truly will impact the way we look at our business and attempt to manage it.
I’m sure everyone is aware of habits, both good and bad, and the impact they have on productivity. However, this book really made it evident just how powerful habits are and maybe more importantly, how pervasive they are. Many of the things that I considered to be part of a conscious decision-making process actually are dictated by the habits that we have. Our habits influence our daily lives at a much higher degree than I had ever understood previously.
The second revelation was that there has been a tremendous amount of real science about habits, how they are formed and how they can be changed. I’m too self-conscious to detail some of the bad habits this book helped me recognize and hopefully gave me the tools to begin to change. Yet, I will admit that I discovered 3-5 habits that are deeply imbedded in my management and that are hindering our ranch’s productivity or performance.
Learning to recognize those habits, deciding to change or embrace them, and then understanding how to develop new habits is key to the process. In the short term, as I work at moving away from some of these bad habits, just being aware of them should help alleviate some problems. If nothing else, perhaps I will begin to delegate or avoid those circumstances where my bad habits exist.
I would add this book to the must-read list; not riveting but profound.
The opinions of Troy Marshall are not necessarily those of beefmagazine.com and the Penton Agriculture Group.
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