inchOne day  my mathematics teacher in high school started introducing a mathematics lesson entitled, “Geometrical progression” by giving us a large piece of paper. He asked us to fold it once and take the folded paper and fold it over again, and then again  and again until the paper is folded 50 times. Then he asked us, “How tall do you think the final stack is going to be”? No one new the answer.

He shocked us when he said that  the real answer was that the height of the stack  would approximate the distance to the sun. He further surprised us when he said that if you folded it over one more time, the stack would be as high as the distance to the sun and back.

From this great lesson of my teacher, I realised that we as lseaders or human beings must prepare ourselves for the possibility that sometimes big changes follow from small events. In this article a small event is what I call an “Inch” and the cumulative effects of small events (Inches) I call it a “Cinch.”

For example, the way you win and build a dominating business where you become financially independent and produce alot of other successful people is by doing it one step at a time. Sometimes you look at the whole situation and it looks totally impossible. When you look at the giants in your business or career, winning may look like a pipe dream.You need to remembe that you are not going to snap your fingers overnight and suddenly be successful in anything that you do. You have got to understand it is an inch by inch. You have got to change slowly over a period of time. If you are a new leader in a certain company,you have got to understand people and dynamics gradually to be able to gain a full grasp of the situation at hand.

In my vilage when I was growing up, there was a neighbour who had a poshmill with diesel engine connected to a flywheel. For the engine to start, he used to rotate the flywheel with a great effort. He got the flywheel to inch forward. He kept pushing and after 30 minutes or so of persistent effort, he had the flywheel to complete one entire turn.

He kept pushing and the flywheel began to move a bit faster, and with continued great effort, he moved it around a second rotation. He kept pushing in a consistent direction. Finally the movement of the flywheel kicked in and at some point there was a breakthrough. What was the one big push that caused the flywheel to go so fast? The second or the third …or the ninth? No! It was all of them added together in an overall accumulation of the effort applied in a consistent direction. This is what makes me say, “Inch by inch makes a cinch”.

Myles Munroe who died in a plane crush recently, wrote in one of his great books and said,  “In every little boy, God hides a man, in every little girl, God hides a great woman, in them together a generation, a dynasty of generations.” Look at how you were like in a family photo as a little boy or girl. Look at yourself now, a brilliant career or business man or woman. A great leader who a whole company follows. A great leader under whose a  nation takes instructions. This is because you grew little by little or inch by inch. This means thererfore that you can only build a nation, a company or  a career step by step so long as you do not lose focus of you great vision . Leaders must learn this phylosophy and drop the false belief that you can build  wealth overnight.You can’t! Those who try to do so by diverting resources that has been entrusted to them for their own use soon realise that it is not worthy the effort.

Leo Tolsboy in his eleventh  book speaks of ancient sophism consisting of Achilles that would never catch with a tortoise he was pursuing inspite the fact that he was running at ten times as fast as the tortoise.

By the time  the Achillies had covered the distance that separated him from the tortoise, the tortoise had covered one tenth of that distance ahead of him. When Achillies had covered that one tenth, the tortoise had covered another one hundredth and so on forever. Syrians infact have a proverb that says “A man born before you may be older by an equivalent of a century’s wisdom.” Walk slowly if you can even inch by inch but make sure you do not stop. By doing this you will accomplish great things.

Sucess comes be either in leaderships or anything from daring to take small steps. Julia Carney said, “ Little drops of water, little gains of sand, makes the mighty ocean and the pleasant land.” Louis I’ Amour also wrote, “Victory is won not in  miles but in inches.” Win a little now, hold your ground, and later win alot more.”

Are you willing to do something small even if it means by an inch? Small steps are a good idea. Never be discouraged when you make progress no matter how slow or small. Only be wary of standing still. Edmund Burke said, “ Nobody makes the greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could only do a little.” In our country we witness many able Kenyans sitting idle because there is only a little to do. Do the little which is there. Before you find employment if you are a graduate for example,  there is something you can do however little.

I agree with Vince Lombardi: “Inches make champions.” Take one small step right now and don’t ignore the small things. Sometimes a safety pin carries more responsibility than a bank president. Remember that there is only one degree between boiling point and steam.

As I conclude, I wish to urge you to remember that the rung  of a ladder or a staircase in your house was never meant to rest upon, but to enable you put your other foot higher.Dante Alighier said, “ From a little spark may burst a mighty frame.” Having said all these, I can confidently say, “inch by inch makes a cinch.”