Fundamental of the Week #4: Give Up the Need to Be Right

Keep your ego, your personal agenda, and your judgments out of the way of doing what’s best for the team or the customer. Don’t let being right interfere with being able to hear others and see possible new solutions you haven’t seen before.

One thing that separates us from other living species is we have opinions, and those opinions are very important to us. They represent things we are sure we have the “right” view on. Even though we can intellectually see something is an opinion or a judgment our behavior will predictably follow opinion not intellect. This usually creates problems and those problems will usually expand by the number of people involved.

Our particular view of the world shapes our thinking of:  “That’s the way life is, or that’s just the way I am, or the way they are,” etc. We see the world through our own interpretations of it, built through life experiences and beliefs, which seems so very real, because to us it is. Our thinking follows our particular world-view and our behavior follows our thinking.

Einstein is credited with “All reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one!”

One interpretation of this quote could be: What we think is real, i.e. THE truth, isn’t really…except to us, plus whoever’s agreement we can garner.

It is important for us to recognize that lots of things get done inside of a network of people and our behavior inside that network impacts the efficacy of the network. To the degree we can recognize our reality is ours, but not others’ necessarily, is the degree to which we can set aside our point of view, our “rightness” and actually hear what others have to say. Something to consider, the rate of our progress and accomplishment could quite likely depend our ability to give up the need to be right.
Craig Clark
Founder and CEO,
Momentum Consulting, Inc