As I was sitting in the dentist’s chair recently getting a root canal (aren’t you jealous of all the early morning fun I’m having?) and he started working on drilling the tooth, my mouth wasn’t completely numb. The second jump made him stop, give me more numbing medicine, and give my mouth a few minutes to numb up. I was thinking how that is just like life. Sometimes the things we start to do don’t work the way we want them to. When that happens, we need to take a step back and regroup. Try a new way of doing things. Go a different route. Bring in different people.
Too often people think their way is the only way to do something. That is never correct. This happens a lot in organizations and businesses. Just because something is done the way it’s always been done, that doesn’t mean it’s the only way to do it. Someone else may have a much different—and probably better—way to do it. They have traveled a very different path than you have, they have different life experiences than you do, they have learned differently than you have. Usually, as long as the thing gets done, does it REALLY matter HOW it is done? Or is it sufficient that it IS done?
Let people experiment. Things don’t always need to be done the same way. And if their way doesn’t work? Step back and regroup. Then you can either do it your way (without the “I told you so”) or try a totally different way.
Be open, be kind, and be productive. Those things will all happen if you are willing to let others do the job they have agreed to do without you hovering or micromanaging them. Just step back, take a breath, and regroup.