the story of the woodcutter
“Are you blind?” the woodcutter replied. “I’m cutting down this tree.”
The young man was unabashed. “You look exhausted! Take a break. Sharpen your axe!”
The woodcutter explained to the young man that he had been sawing for hours and did not have time to take a break.
The young man insisted… “If you sharpen your axe, you would cut down the tree much faster.”
The woodcutter said, “I don’t have time to sharpen my axe. Don’t you see I’m too busy!”
Of course, this is a parable about life and it applies to your business. In a fast-changing world, there’s no guarantee that just working harder will get you where you need to go. Take time to sharpen your resources.
Whetstone • noun: a fine-grained stone used with water for sharpening cutting tools.
A stone used in conjunction with water to sharpen tools encompasses the very essence of the Whetstone brand. The stone symbolizes timeless principles and core ideologies, upon which great businesses are built. Water symbolizes knowledge and insight, which are constantly flowing and being replenished. A dry stone will damage the edge of a tool, whereas a wet stone reduces friction, resulting in a sharper blade that remains intact. Our company name is a metaphor for the sharpening of your company’s edge while simultaneously reducing the friction and resistance commonly associated with change.
Stay sharp – the world is constantly changing. What got you where you are today, won’t get you where you need to be tomorrow. Take time out to sharpen your saw and you’ll gain more ground.
Our logo represents the shift from “me-oriented” thinking to “we-oriented” thinking. The grey M sits below the vibrant blue W. The M is constricted and unable to grow. The W is expansive and open to possibilities. The W sits on top of the M to show that we all start out with me-oriented thinking. It is only as we mature, that we realize that our growth and purpose only come to light when we realize we live in an interdependent world and, as such, we can only win when others win. More specifically, we can only win, after our clients win.
Over 25 years ago I discovered Sales. I was in university and realized I needed another part time job to make ends meet. I started a small business and used my bicycle to get around the city and sell advertising spaces in my publication. I just loved the whole experience of meeting with business owners and showing them how I could help them. As much as I loved selling, I was aware that sales wasn’t considered an honourable profession, and I couldn’t understand why it needed to be like this. I never had to compromise my integrity, or my value system, to be a successful sales professional. Yet, the widely held perception about my craft was clouded with negativity, and the false belief, that a truly effective salesperson operates unscrupulously. It was then, that I resolved to create a couple of life-defining goals.
Firstly, I would pursue a career in sales. It was, and is, my passion and my purpose. Secondly, I wanted to prove that the most successful sales professionals are the ones who operate with honour and integrity. And no relationship, business or otherwise, can survive without these tenets.
Fast forward a couple decades later, and I’m proud to say, I still get the same deep sense of satisfaction from successful sales transactions, while still operating successfully without compromising ethics. Of course now, it’s gone beyond me as an individual, and I’ve extended my processes to my team and partners. And I now speak to chief executives and sales leaders all over the world, sharing my business approach and growth strategies.
Premium customer relationships and experiences are at the forefront of our business philosophy. This means ensuring that everything we do provides value to you, so that you, in turn, can create greater value for your customers.
We operate from a “give” rather than a “get” perspective. With this outlook, we gain the ability to perceive the world through your eyes, in addition to our own. And with both perspectives we tackle your obstacles with greater foresight and accuracy.
These values embody the spirit of Whetstone. They articulate a code of behaviour and a set of beliefs about how we work, and what you can expect when dealing with us.
- Seek knowledge: The world is constantly changing and there is always a better way. We stay fresh.
- Humour: People who can laugh at themselves tend to be humble and open-minded.
- Aspire to make a difference: We want to work with people who want to make an impact.
- Reliability and responsiveness: We don’t let people down. Period.
- People first: We are in business to help people. We care about our customers and our employees and maintain integrity in all of our interactions.