Seth Godin at Seth’s Blog has posted a couple of thoughts this week that have me itching to break out of the box. I love the part in “Without Them” when he says “People are rarely willing to step up and stop you, and often just waiting to follow someone crazy enough to actually do something.” In “Why Ask Why?” he reminds me that breaking out of the box often leads to improvements.
I tend to push the status quo at work, asking questions about why we do things the way we do and chafing at the rules trying to find more efficient and productive ways to do things. Perhaps it’s time to do this more, in all contexts, not simply to fluster rule-followers, but to provoke original thought and positive change.
Lisis' post called “Net Worth Vs Self Worth: The Passion Paradox” at Quest for Balance gave me the sense that quitting the rat race might mean that we aren’t participating in trying to improve it. Is it possible that the changes we want at work might actually be needed and that we are the motivated, intelligent, and passionate people who can help improve a workplace environment? What if all we need to do is to ask for the change we seek? There are probably others who want the same things. How can we apply our passion to these kinds of things?
In response to my comment on her post, Lisis said, “What if we poured our passion and creativity into improving the rat race experience for ourselves and for others? ... More and more businesses are realizing the importance of overall wellness and creating a positive work/ life balance (happy workers earn more and cost less than unhappy, sickly, or quitting workers)… Those who just wish their rat race experience was a little more exciting, fulfilling, and interesting don’t need to run off and try to be entrepreneurs. ... Finding ways to improve the workplace environment would benefit FAR more people than finding ways to help individuals go off on their own.”
How can you improve your context? What do you do every day without knowing why? (think paperwork, approval processes, red tape) What would happen if you asked?