Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Are some mistakes intended?

English: Decisions Decisions (Horton, Point or...
English: Decisions Decisions (Horton, Point or Green) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
I remember this advertisement about one pen. Here's how the converstation goes:
Dad: "Oh no, not again." and he crumples the just-written on paper and throws it away.
Girl: "What do you like not, Dad?"
Dad: "Mistakes!"
Girl: "Now you don't need to. There's a pen that erases mistakes!"
Dad: "That's impossible. Pen can't erase!"
Then the daughter takes out the pen that erases, and voila! Dad was amazed! From then on, he'd not need to dislike mistakes.

If only mistakes and errors can be erased. On the contrary...

I've been thinking a lot about mistakes, on the business side. It goes like this. We are expected to make decisions. We expect our bosses to make decisions. We expect our management to make decisions. Know what this means? One way or the other, we will make mistakes. On one hand, we'd hate mistakes and we go all the way training, educating, and inculcating to all employees the art of decision making. On the other hand, we put in the pressure for those who have to make decisions to make decisions. Humanly speaking, and humanly operating, mistakes still happen, and wrong decisions are made now and then. It is the issue of the latter, that we are "expected to make decisions", which, I can say, IMHO, is culprit and main reason why there are bloopers and blunders in the office. We'd hate managers who don't make decisions, who are afraid of making decisions. We also don't like superiors who haphazardly make (erroneous) decisions. But guess what, between the two, we'd rather have a boss who'd make a decision, and clean up the mess later on, than one who doesn't. Where does this bring you? This prevailing culture is one big reason of why we don't stop solving problems and fixing errors and cleaning up mess after mess; which boss or superior or manager is able to say, 'I make the right decision every time'? If in a day, there are 100 decisions made, imagine if there are 10 wrong ones, specially from the upstream level, which then trickles down, the decision ramifying into who knows how many, only to realize (the soonest would be best) that it is a wrong, wrong decision? Seems like golf, eh? A small miss when driving brings to a big, big distance away from the target. And yet, we'd rather have a boss who is able to make decisions than one who doesn't. The decision made, whether right or wrong, is a side issue.

Sleep Optimization Program

Yup, we'd like to see bosses who can and will make decisions as and when needed, and all the more, we'd like to see and be assured that the decisions made are right. Not to mention 'wise decisions', just being right. TJ once said, 'If I should choose between righteousness and peace, I'd choose righteousness.' Where would that so-called 'righteousness' bring you? Totalitarianism? Authoritarian rule? A company that is everything else but being humane? Low-level employees are not necessarily required to make decisions, just to be heard, and understood. Even a wise decision made, if not correctly executed, will not merit much. Who helps clean up the mess? Who works the most for rectifying the wrong done? Who'd stay when the wrong-decision-maker boss bolts out the door when he loses face? And yet, who gets the better pay, then and in the next job?

Let's not talk about being fair. But we'd sure like to see better decision makers. You are free to agree or disagree with me, but this idea will begin first by making sure that we don't brew this kind of 'mistakes-are-acceptable, wrong-decisions-are-allowed' mentality in the company, or that if it already there, we put a stop to it. Don't condone it.

Was my posting this a mistake? Hey, don't put the blame on me. I made a decision...
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