sharpen your axe

Sharpen your axe

Do you sharpen your axe or Are YOU like this woodcutter?

There was a newly joined woodcutter and the king was really impressed by his dedication towards his work. Out of encouragement, he started giving his best in work and cut 18 trees in the first month and the king was glad.

The next month he put in the same effort but could cut only 15 trees. And the third month, he still tried his best but could cut only 12 trees. The king visited him in the third month and talked about his decrease in productivity.

He explained that he might have lost his strength or got too old to do the work. The king asked him “when was the last time you sharpened your AXE?” To the surprise, he has not even done it once in the last three months. That was the only reason why he couldn’t cut more trees.

Sharpen your axe – Debrief:

In our professional and personal life, we become so engrossed in routine activities that we keep doing things without sharpening our AXE i.e. without undergoing any SELF DEVELOPMENT. Not surprising that most of us fall behind our work in terms of time and quality.

Who’s duty is to SHARPEN YOUR AXE? Some might think it’s the company’s responsibility to train their employees so that they can get higher productivity. However, my take is that it’s your responsibility to sharpen your AXE.

However most of the time, we believe that we don’t have the time or the interest for self-development. But when the next promotion (increment or job opportunity) goes to your colleague who has achieved some certification, degree or just some course that had increased his productivity (skills), you feel neglected and start blaming the corporate structure.

Once, you accept the fact that your growth is your responsibility then the whole world around you will change. You will start identifying opportunities like some courses, some weekend classes, some certifications, some degrees, etc. Because I believe that, as you increase your value in professional life your income increases proportionately. I can prove the equation, value and income are directly proportional.

You cannot increase your income directly without increasing your value in the system. Some might be lucky for some time but in the longer run, its always the person who provides more value to the company is paid the highest. You can look at your organization and you will realize that there are people who are paid “X” times your salary are perceived by the company as “X” times more valuable than you. So to increase your income, increase your value through SELF DEVELOPMENT.  

So start sharpening your AXE and you will see so many trees to be cut (promotions, increments, bonus, better job opportunity all lined up to be taken by YOU).

Sharpen your axe

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