from the Blog

Business Teams and Grandfather Clocks


A few weeks ago, a good friend drew an analogy between the intricacies of a watch and the workings of a business team. Later in the evening his comments were still resonating with me as I was making some adjustments to our grandfather clock. As I gave it more thought, the similarities between my clock and the workings of a business team became quite remarkable. 

Grandfather Clock

You see, my grandfather clock doesn’t always keep very good time – it seems to be running too fast or too slow – and needs regular adjustments. For those of you who are familiar with pendulum clocks you know that the length of the pendulum is integral to the clock keeping proper time. An adjusting nut at the bottom of the pendulum allows it to be lengthened or shortened as appropriate.

The grandfather clock gurus recommend that it is easier to start with the clock running a little bit slow and making small adjustments in a structured manner to ‘sneak‘ up on the perfect time. Even with a clock, it is easier to control something that is measured and growing than it is to control a run away train. This sure makes good business sense to me. 

  • What adjustments are you making?

The weights are very important. Each of the three weights provide power to operate the time, chime, and strike trains of the clock. Each weight is different and needs to be in the right position or the clock will not work properly. Just like the clock, you are going to be more effective if your skills and passion match your job. Your team will be more successful, individually and collectively, if they have the right skills and are in the right seats. 

  • Are your priorities in order? Do they support your goals?
  • Are your team members in the right seats to be successful?

If you take time to adjust it properly, a grandfather clock is an exceptionally good timekeeper. If you continually dedicate effort to your own personal growth and development you will achieve your goals. If you pay attention to the members of your team and give them proper nourishment and support they will be successful at the highest level.

  • What are you doing for personal growth?
  • How are you nourishing your team?


This week . . . . give yourself permission to make adjustments.

. . . . go have an Awesome Week!

Tom Trabue