Monday, February 20, 2012

is there a better way?

is there a better way to do this?

how often do you ask that question? how often do i?
probably not often enough.

i think that when we're doing anything that matters and we STOP asking the question "is there a better way?" then we're already done. our time is almost up.

this is a really important question to ask - to ask yourself and others.
because if what you're doing DOES matter, then wouldn't you want to know a better way?

so WHY don't we ask this question?
is it because we already think we have the best way? no better way exists?
i hope not. i hope that's not the reason. because that's pretty arrogant and at that point we are SO far gone that a conversation on this subject is pointless. if we find ourselves thinking that we already have the best way then we can probably just quit at that point.

so, i'm not convinced that's the reason. i push back all the time on having to ask myself and others this Q. i don't like to ask this Question. but why?
WHY do we not like to ask "is there a better way?"

it's hard

it takes more TIME

more effort

it makes it obvious that we're not the expert/ we don't know everything

it's very uncomfortable

it takes a little bit of humility

if we discover there is a better way then we'll have to STOP doing it our current way and make the necessary changes.

and that is hard.

so, it is EASIER to just keep doing it the same way and not even rock the boat.

but again, let's ask ourselves - is this something that MATTERS? is it worth doing? then it's worth doing better right? if it really matters that much.

maybe the best question to ask ourselves in these moments when we want to bail on doing the hard work of figuring out a BETTER WAY is...
what's at stake if we don't find a better way?


musicman said...

Asking this question is instinctive to me. However, it is rare to find an organizational culture that embraces this question.

musicman said...

I think the reason is that the organization takes on a personality of its own with its own instinctive self preservation instincts. Questioning status quo does not feel safe.

patrick mitchell said...

yep - self-preservation is where everything naturally tends