Douglas Emerson Profitable Horseman
Profitable Horseman Newsletter
February 8, 2008 
In This Issue
You Don't Need An M.B.A. From Harvard to Build A Systematic Business
Others Have Said
Back At The Barn

You Don't Need An M.B.A. From Harvard To Build A Systematic Business

$ hat

I was in the office of an investment advisor yesterday.  Our discussion involved the investment rewards and risks of stocks, bonds, mutual funds and a variety of alternative investments. The advisor has thirty eight years of experience and loves his job.

He confided he is delighted to stay up late at night studying tiny graphs of individual stock and fund performances for the last decade. (yawn)  It's as natural to him as bridling a horse is to you. 

But, in our conversation, the advisor confessed to me that attaching a document to an e-mail is something he just finally mastered last week.

His office assistants showed him how to do it.  They created a system for him to follow.  It seems hard to believe that someone who talks about P/E ratios, leveraged buy outs and hedging needs a system of step 1, step 2, step 3 and step 4 to attach a document to his e-mail as his fumbling fingers square dance with his computer keyboard.  But the truth is, he does.

Processes that come naturally to you are unnatural to others.


  • Changing a flat tire on a car
  • Using an ATM for a cash withdrawal
  • Building a camp fire

Even though millions of people know how to do these tasks; millions don't know.

It's not a question of intelligence or ability; it's a matter of learning by having a system to follow.

It's about seeing, hearing, doing and using a system to operate with.

Think about some of the basic tasks in your horse business:

  • Feeding
  • Watering
  • Mucking and Bedding
  • Turn out
  • Blanket changing
  • Grooming

They're all tasks that you can do without even thinking about them, but is that true for all of your employees and helpers?

I suspect your answer is a thundering NO!

I'm convinced there is no simple business. Selling a cup of coffee has its complexities.

What's so complex about selling coffee?

Nothing is left to chance at Starbucks Coffee.  Management at Starbucks knows the value of systems and they make a point to help their employees by providing everyone with "The Green Apron Book".  It includes Starbucks' service philosophy, a system itself.  "The Green Apron Book" , a supplement to a well developed training system, keeps the Starbucks systems standardized and consistent at world wide locations.

Even though you may never have multiple locations, you can and should develop your own systems for your business.  You undoubtedly have learned through experience that leaving things to chance is expensive.  "She'll figure it out and learn on her own", may be a true statement.  But, you'll be paying the tuition for her "on the job" education.

Take some time in the coming weeks to put your business systems on paper.

Don't write it out from memory.   Walk through it, live it and feel it as you describe the steps in writing.  Start with feeding and watering, then tackle stall mucking and bedding.  The more systems you identify, the easier it will be for your help to operate without your constant supervision.

No need to obsess over every detail as you capture your systems in words on paper.  You can add and edit in time.  Your experienced employees are going to help you, too, since they live the systems every day.

Written systems will save you time, contribute to improved efficiency and reduce conflict and frustration with employees.

Get going now on your business systems unless you prefer the default system.

It's called "chaos".

Others Have Said 
"In pioneer days they used oxen for heavy pulling, and when one ox couldn't budge a log, they didn't try to grow a larger ox. We shouldn't be trying for bigger computers, but for more systems of computers."  -- G. Hopper
"Nothing is particularly hard if you divide it into small jobs."  --  Henry Ford
"You just have to read the manual and press the right button."  --  Homer Simpson
Back At The Barn 

winter turnout


If you were among the record 97.5 million viewers of the Super Bowl last Sunday, you witnessed great football entertainment with the match up between the Giants and Patriots.  Regardless of which team you were rooting for, you have to admit it was a well played game.


Unlike most Super Bowls, the TV commercials left viewers like me wondering what the creators of the commercials were thinking about.  A collection of commercials were dimly created and designed with bad taste. Appropriately, the spots were only brilliant in leaving a bad taste in the minds of the viewers.


Budweiser's story of Hank the Clydesdale training to make the Bud wagon team, however, came up with top viewer ratings.   A young Clydesdale, in training with the help of a Dalmatian, set to the theme from Rocky sounds like the corniest idea ever put on paper for a TV spot in the highest priced programming of all time. 


But, when all put together with the right video, it was a crowd pleaser coming in with positive vibes from just about everyone.  How can you go wrong with a dog, a horse and an emotional movie sound track? 


The lesson learned is that effective advertising doesn't need to be clever, daring or edgy.  Feel good emotion still sells better than ever.



Plan for Success in 2008 
If you are stuck on starting the process of system building for your business, contact me by clicking on the link below.  Let's have a coversation about how Profitable Horseman strategies can help your business.

 Click Hereph logo

Be a leader and have a spectacular week!

Doug Emerson
Profitable Horseman Deewochagall
Speaking of the Horse Business!
American Ranch Horse Association 
$ hat

I'm delighted to be speaking about the horse business at the ARHA Convention in Owensboro, KY.

I'll be there on Saturday, February 16, 2008.  Convention details are available by clicking here.


Quick Links
Join Our Mailing List
Back to Articles Page