Sometimes the right answer is to do nothing.

I can’t count the number of practice building projects people try to get me involved with each year.  Most start out with great intentions of making something run better, smoother and more profitably.  The idea is clean and neat.  Five years ago I was jumping at each of these chances to leave a mark for the better.

I’ve always been fine putting in 60 hour weeks so I was able to do my regular jobs and counted these toward the betterment of the business.  The unfortunate truth I learned is that most ideas fail not because they are bad ideas, not because there aren’t motivated people working on them and not because the business doesn’t want to change.  No, these projects often fail because either no one steps up to own it after it is complete or the idea begins to change and morph as more people get involved.

Good intentions are an amazingly effective trap.  People with ideas but can’t do them on their own can bring a lot of passion to their pitch for help.  Sadly intentions don’t fuel success.

Any solution that a person has personally invested in is more likely to be followed through on.  When they are handed the answer it doesn’t have the same perceived value.  It may seem hard or unfriendly to say no to simply helping but often it leads to the best outcome.


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