Never Stop Sowing

Most of us know Pennsylvania native John Chapman by his popular name, “Johnny Appleseed.” Johnny, as the popular image of him goes, was a poor wandering pioneer who combined evangelism with sowing apple seeds randomly across the country. The fact is John planted nurseries, not orchards. He built fences around them to protect them from livestock, and then left the nurseries in the care of a neighbor. John returned every couple of years to tend the nursery.

The caretakers he left in charge of the nurseries sold the apple trees on shares, making both John and his apple franchisees very well off. You could say he was one of the best salesmen and businessmen of all time. However, most people miss the point of what made Johnny Appleseed so famous and so profitable. He never stopped sowing. He left a trail of trees, not scattered randomly around the mountains, but carefully cultivated, protected and profitable. He established a territory, nurtured it, entrusted it to someone who would keep it up, then moved on to repeat the process. What was his sales secret?

  • Plant and protect your product
  • Maintain and nurture what you plant
  • Never stop sowing

“Keep on sowing your seed, for you never know which will grow, perhaps it all will.”
~Albert Einstein

Illustration by Mike Baker

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