3 Reasons why the word “rainmaker” is rubbish!


Rainmaker is one of those words I really hate and here’s why: –

  1. You can’t make rain. Obvious I know but frequently ignored by the rainmakers themselves. They’re, fakes; frauds even. You can dance about waving your arms in the air and making a big show as much as you like but not a drop will fall. Sacrifice some innocent livestock – nada. Even hiring a light aircraft and flying around sprinkling silver iodide into the atmosphere is not guaranteed.
  2. Raining on my parade. When it does rain it is less than a pleasant experience: grey, cold, wet – uuuggghhh. All it conjures up for me is BBQ’s in the garage, playing scrabble in a caravan somewhere in Wales, Wales, and a lots on umbrellas on wedding photos. Nobody ever says “we are planning a picnic for the weekend, oh I do hope it rains”.
  3. You have no control. Even if your ludicrous rainmaking activities happen to coincide with a nasty ridge of low-pressure hitting your region and it rains you have no control over it at all. How much, where and for how long rests with Dyeus and not with you dear readers.

The word rainmaker really does lack any redeeming features and I urge you to stop using it forthwith. But what to use instead?

Let me introduce you to the word firestarter – now that’s a word I can deal with. Let me share: –

  1. Everybody loves fire. It makes us feel warm and cheerful, we can cook things on it (so long as it isn’t raining of course) and it’s great for sitting around and telling salty-sea-dog tales well into the night.
  2. You can make fire at will. All you need are decent conditions (hurricanes are out), the right tools and equipment (all easy to find and lots of options) and the right techniques (there are several and you can learn them). How similar to business development is that?
  3. You have choices. Having done the skilled bit and got a fire going you can either build it yourself, draft in a few others to keep it going or hand it over to somebody else to look after. Once again, how BD can you get?

So banish that horrible and totally inappropriate word rainmaker and replace it with the terribly apt and totally brilliant word firestarter. When you have done that why not slip out, get the right tools and equipment, learn the techniques and become one yourself.

Let me leave you with a clip of the great Ray Mears showing us all how it’s done.

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Passionate about making business development a profession not just a job. Built and sold a £40m group in less than 9 years. Doing it all again and loving it!

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5 comments on “3 Reasons why the word “rainmaker” is rubbish!
  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Mike Ames, Mike Ames. Mike Ames said: 3 Reasons why the word "rainmaker" is rubbish! http://wp.me/pY2x4-bI […]

  2. Kate Onions says:

    I have always struggled to understand why people who bring in work are called ‘rainmakers’. I wholly support the change to firestarter!

  3. Word Service says:

    I never knew people who brought in work were called rainmakers! In which universe is that? I’ve learned something today.(Although agree, it’s a terrible word. I’d much rather my clients and colleagues called me sunshine!)

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Mike Ames

Passionate about making business development a profession not just a job. Built and sold a £40m group in less than 9 years. Doing it all again and loving it!

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