I’m a man of few words…sometimes :). And because of this, I totally dislike anything that requires too much talk. I’d rather listen to your many rants than add mine.
For example, I dislike meetings (even though I attend them), big idea people with no ounce of action in their existence, excessive planning, and other related nuances.
In informal meetings, I contribute minimally especially when there’s not much at stake. In professional meetings, I’m most times the devil’s advocate.
Here’s a scenario…
Team lead: I want us to do this enormous project. It will be this big, this large, this round and will have all these sub actions under it.
Me: (cuts him short before he spends another half hour dreaming) Oh nice! Great idea. So are we the only ones doing this project?
Team lead: Yeah.
Me: So we’re not bringing anyone else on board? This project isn’t an easy one.
Team lead: No we’re not.
Me: What’s your budget?
Team lead: My budget is this small.
Me: So you want this small number of people in this team to do this big project on this small budget?
Team lead: Yeah we can do it. Imagine if we pull this off. We’ll get these benefits and so on and so forth.
Other team members: Yes boss, that makes sense. We can also do this and this and this.
All through this session, I often stay quiet and watch.
As the meeting comes to a close, I raise my hand.
Me: What are the next steps. Who is in charge of this and this? When is the expected time of arrival for this?
Other team members start to shift in their chairs and hope no responsibility falls on them.
Two things happen after this. It’s either I end up doing a ton of the implementations and get really indispensable, or it dies a natural death once the team lead realizes that with all the present work on ground, there’s no extra time for his big idea.
My point? Once you’re certain of what you want to do, plan all you want, but don’t get too stuck in that. Take action on next steps, especially the smallest ones.
A lot of people love to plan, but when it comes to action, what do they do? They tweak their plan and add more tentacles. The Idea generation centre is such a lovely place to be in.
If that was how things should be, God would have been stuck in heaven till today planning how Jesus Christ would redeem the world. In fact, He may not have created the world in the first place because He’ll be stuck tweaking the blue colour of the ocean in His mind.
“Oh it has to be the right shade of blue. It’s not quite there yet.”