Why Do We Cut Off the Ends of the Pot Roast?

Michelle here…and as an efficiency coach here at Smart Women’s Coaching® I usually look at the oldest processes in your business first.  You know…the ones you’ve been doing for so long that you don’t even think about them anymore.  You may not even remember how they got started.  It’s just the way you’ve always done it.

So it may be surprising to hear that it’s probably where the majority of your efficiency gaps and energy wasters will be found.  Technology is always improving, updating and making things easier and yet most people will insist they don’t have the time to learn.  The fact is you can’t afford the time that’s being wasted by not learning.

Whenever I hear “That’s the way we’ve always done it” I know that I need to address that process first.  It always reminds me of a funny story I heard many years ago. It goes like this…

A mother was teaching her young daughter how to make a pot roast.  The recipe was a very old recipe that was handed down from generation to generation and it was a tradition to teach the younger women in the family.

“The first thing you must do”, said the mother “is cut off the ends of the pot roast.”  The daughter, curious as to why that was necessary, asked her mother why they had to cut off the ends.

The mother replied, “That’s just the way we’ve always done it.  My mother did it that way and her mother did it that way”.

Not satisfied with that response the girl went to her Grandmother and asked the same question. “Grandma, why do we have to cut off the ends of the pot roast before we cook it?”

Her Grandmother gave her the same answer…”That’s just the way we’ve always done it.  My mother taught me to do it that way.”

Still not satisfied with this reasoning, the girl finally went to the source of the recipe…her Great-Grandmother.  “Great Grandma, I would like to carry on the tradition of your delicious pot roast but I have a question for you.  Why do we cut off the ends of the pot roast before we cook it?”

The elder woman of the family gave this great insight into the mystery of why they’ve ‘always done it that way’…”Oh honey”, she said, “When I was first married, the pot I had wasn’t big enough for the whole pot roast so we always had to cut off the ends so it would fit in the pot.”

So you see, just because you’ve ‘always done it that way’ does not mean you should continue to do it that way.  (Think of all that wasted pot roast.)

Now take a moment to think about some of the tasks that you perform that you’ve always done a certain way.

  • Can it be updated with newer technology or programs?
  • Is it possible there’s a better way to do it but you haven’t taken the time to learn how?
  • Can it be eliminated all together?

Sometimes it takes someone looking in from the outside to see the problem.

I have helped many people simplify their systems freeing up time, saving money, and improving productivity.

If you’d like some help finding your efficiency gaps and energey wasters then click the link below and schedule a consultation to see how I can help you.

And catch yourself the next time you say “It’s just the way I’ve always done it.”


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