Keep out

Silos store things. Their function is to contain and protect whatever is inside. If you want those contents to offer their full potential, you have to let them out. Think about it. Usually, silos hold seed or grain. The seed inside can only grow when it is taken out of the silo and planted. The grain inside can only nourish when it is removed and processed into food. Besides that, if you keep your stuff locked up for too long, it’ll rot, or become moldy, or varmints will infiltrate.

When I look around corporate America, all too often I see a landscape punctuated by silos, like giant exclamation points that say, “Keep out! Leave my stuff alone!” Occasionally, someone might decide to tear one down, but it has been standing for so long that the stuff inside isn’t worth much any more. Whatever seeds are left in tact won’t grow because they’ve rotted in the dark.

Silos aren’t for growing things, and that includes businesses.

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