MVP: Avoid responding with prescriptions by putting people first.
My cousin George writes a weekly recap he shares with the whole family. He always begins the letter with a quote from his uncle’s diary. Last week the quote was from a day in 1953:
“Everything is the same at the office with the rut growing deeper and deeper as time goes by. Thus, I presume I am fast becoming a good bank employee.”
I reacted emotionally to this excerpt but wasn’t exactly sure why. As I reread it now, it strikes me as such a sad state of affairs, but one that is all too common.
You work in a system, and that system expects certain things of you. Some systems can be very confining or prescriptive.
When we work in these systems, we ourselves can become prescriptive, responding via formula.
That’s where the rut comes from.
It seems clear the way to avoid getting into a rut is to avoid being prescriptive.
This can be a challenge as systems throve on order and predictability, which encourages the prescriptive approach.
What would happen if we stopped being prescriptive? If we climbed out of the rut?
What if we put people first, and shaped the system around them?
Instead of doing the opposite.
Today’s intention: Check in with yourself. Are you in a rut? Are you leveraging your power and creativity? Are you putting people first?