This month’s article was written with the help of ATI Coach and 20 Group Facilitator Rick Johnson.
Have you ever thought about the possibility that many things you do every day are because of a misguided or unexamined belief? I heard longtime ATI Coach and 20 Group Facilitator, Rick Johnson, tell a story how this can happen to the best of us. Let me repeat a story that has been told many times. Here is my favorite version:
A husband and wife were in the kitchen. The husband was reading the newspaper while his wife was preparing ham for dinner. The husband watched the wife cut off one inch from either end of the ham. He asked why she cut the end off, proclaiming, “That’s a waste of good ham!” She said, “That’s the way my mother prepared the ham.” The husband asked, “Why did your mom cut the ends off?” The wife didn’t know.
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Later, the wife called her mom to find out why she cut the ends of the ham off. Her mom said, “Because that was the way my mom prepared the ham.” The wife’s grandma had passed away several years earlier, but her grandpa was still living. She called her grandpa and asked, “Grandpa, why did Grandma cut the ends off the ham?” He thought for a while and then said so that the ham would fit in her pan!
Seems silly, doesn’t it? Just think of all the good ham cut off and wasted all those years. But does it not get you to thinking — what about me? How many things do I do every day that if examined go back to some unexamined belief or misguided belief system?
Maybe I am a rebel or just a bit of a researcher, but all my life I have asked why and questioned everything even to the point of getting into trouble. And I can’t tell you how many times when I asked, “Why do you do it that way?” I was told, “Because that’s the way we always have done it!” Let me tell you, that answer never satisfied me.
I one time came across a book titled, “If It Ain’t Broke…Break It.” It challenges everything we do in business and it was like it was written for a person like me. Now don’t get me wrong, there are very good reasons why we do a lot of things and follow procedures and I wholeheartedly agree with them (most of them LOL). So let’s examine just a few things that came to my mind and see if this challenges you to maybe “break it.” First, let’s examine the things you do every day that could just maybe be causing you to not get the results out of your business that you really want — you know, kind of “shooting yourself in the foot” type of deal.
Knowledge is not power!
How many of you read books? Magazines like ABRN and so on to get tips and ideas on how to make your business better? Well of course all of you reading this article, right? Anyway, here is a great challenge to that habit from me. STOP READING these things! If you really want to make a difference in your business, how many more books and articles do you think you need to read? For goodness sake put the book down and start implementing the things you have already learned! There are only so many ways to do time management, only so many ways to learn how to be more productive. The old saying that knowledge is power is WRONG! Implementing the things you have learned and making change is power!