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What Do the Others Do?

I was talking to somebody yesterday about well-being, and she said, "I get very frustrated when organisations ask, What do others do?"

"They have no idea what they are doing" would be the perfect answer.

When she said it, all sorts of examples went through my head related to this question. What do others do? Following others often meant that we were breaking the labour law, and when I highlighted it, the answer was, "Everyone is doing it."

Whilst sometimes knowing what others do can provide us with information, blindly following anything without knowing the context screams incompetence.

Once, one of our senior leaders suggested Google policies to be implemented in our organisation. I asked him, do you know the IQ difference between Google employees and ours and how those differences impact decision-making using those policies for what they were designed for? The person didn't even understand what I was asking.

Just because it works somewhere, it doesn't mean it will work in your organisation.

I urge organisations to look at their specific needs and unique components because they will, by default, require different interventions. Move away from off-the-shelf programs or interventions because they are like generic over-the-counter medicine that will treat, to some degree, the symptoms, but you will still be in the dark about the cause. When you treat the symptoms instead of the cause, you still have the problem but choose to ignore it. Is this the type of person or leader you want to be?

No, you want to be competent, curious and a pioneer. You want to be acknowledged for thinking & doing things differently and not falling in line. You want to feel good because you are creative and stand out. You want to be known for not being a sheep. You want to be proud to be able to do these not of your title. But you keep asking, "What do others do?" and follow those without understanding their and your context, you can be none of these.

If you want to be proud by thinking differently about your organisational practices and being different, we can help you. Give us a shout, and don't be a follower.

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