The Parable of the Abandoned Blogs and Twitter Accounts – Execution Really is All About Finishing What You Start

So, here’s your question for the day — what have you abandoned that you wish you had not abandoned?

Success requires a lot of starting, and then tweaking, and improving, and collaborating – and, then, sometimes, some intentional stopping.  If something is not going to work out, then it’s time to stop doing it.

But, sometimes, we stop doing it well before we know if it would be valuable to continue it, or not.

I thought of this during one of my periodic Twitter unclutterings.  I have right at 850 followers on Twitter.  Not as many as I would like; a very slow growth rate; but growing.  And occasionally I have to “stop following'” to free up some room to “follow some more…”  (I invite you to follow me on Twitter – I link to all of these blog posts, and many more interesting items.  And, I do keep at it, tweeting many times a day, typically).

I tweet, a lot.  Thoughts, ideas…, but mainly links to articles. Blog posts that I write, posts that others write, articles from other sites…

{Did you know that a lot of people link to articles they never even read for themselves.  I do not do that.  I read, then I Tweet. “I read, therefore I tweet.”}.

But, during this recent uncluttering, I learned (again) that a number of Twitter accounts that I followed when they were in their infancy – you know, after just a few tweets — have been abandoned.  And an abandoned Twitter account is a sad thing…  Quite a few tweeters have.not.tweeted in forever…  I thought about sending some e-mails. To ask:

Why did you start your Twitter account?
Why did you quit tweeting so quickly?

The same is true for blogs.  Have you ever gone to a web site, clicked on the blog tab, and discovered… they never post on their blog!

Oh, they may have starting tweeting, or blogging… But, they have not kept at it…

Now, on the one hand, that is totally okay. No one has to tweet, or blog, or check e-mail…  It is up to you, and your preferences, and your work style, and your work needs.

But, on the other hand, if you invite folks to follow you on Twitter, and read your blog, aren’t you kind of expected to… keep at it?

And, maybe this is a “parable” for other business efforts.  How often do we get an idea, start working on it, but then don’t keep at it?  Too often, I’m afraid.  I know I’m guilty of this!

Years ago, I heard a great sermon from a preacher from Tennessee. Here was his sermon, in a nutshell (filled with the usual stories – good stories! — to illustrate the point):

Starting is really pretty easy. 
Success belongs to those who actually finish what they start.
Especially those who finish well.

Tom Meyer, who is leading a bonus sessions on Execution this Friday after our First Friday Book Synopsis, would call this process “execution.” He says that he considers this the number one problem for businesses — they don’t execute.

They don’t execute — they don’t finish what they start, or, if they do finish, they finish poorly; they don’t finish well.

Here’s an idea:  either send out one final tweet and tell everybody goodbye — or, start tweeting.  Write one final blog post and tell everybody goodbye — or, start posting.

And, either announce to the world that your new idea/product/service was a nice idea, but you are now abandoning it – or, get to it, keep at it, and make it successful.

Finish what you start.  Execute your plan fully.  This is business success 101, don’t you think?


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