“What if you got fired?” That was the question I found myself asking this week. Let me explain.
Economist-philosopher and author E.F. Schumacher said,
“Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius - and a lot of courage - to move in the opposite direction.”
That quote sparked a late afternoon session of walking in circles, looking at the floor. Naturally self-critical, I was saying to myself, “What am I doing that’s getting in the way?”
Which led to management expert Peter Drucker whispering in my ear, “Stop what you would not start.” Which led to, “If I got fired, what would the next person do?”
This is a good reframe. What if you walked into the job today? What would you do differently? When outsiders join the team, they usually challenge established norms - they are catalysts. How do we artificially make ourselves a catalyst for our teams? Or for our communities?
I applaud Naval Ravikant's clarity when he says,
"Don't take yourself so seriously. You're just a monkey with a plan.”
We bring forward our lessons and perspectives but also our biases. Experience improves judgment as a general rule, and it creates blinders. Intentionality is required to see around them.
If I can put my biases, experiences, and beliefs aside for a moment, I may find more truth. Almost everything gets better with an outside perspective.
The only thing I’m sure about is I shouldn’t believe everything I think.
Keep learning, friends.