The need to be right is a damaging concept, whether it is applied to one’s personal or business life. When this behavior is nourished in private, it is sure to radiate and your home business too. Once this mindset spreads and permeates the business, the resulting damage can be staggering.
We Like to Be Right
Having the right answer, the right approach, the right solution – this is a deeply rooted drive that has its origins in traditional cultural beliefs. It is so deeply ingrained in our cultural system that we most often do not even notice that we have the desire at all. Yet on close self examination, I am sure that most will discover that we do, in fact, like to be right. More than this, we feel a certain compulsion to make sure that we have all our ducks in a row, and that everyone else knows it.
Why do we do this? from the earliest age we are taught what is correct and incorrect. Right down to the color we must choose to paint our trees and the clothes we draw on our stick men. We’re told who is the boss of home and country and what we need to say to them in every situation. We’re rewarded for following this pattern, affirmed that we will land enviable employment, and grow proud of being right. Being wrong, conversely, results in shame and guilt, and this is where it all goes truly wrong.
A Stimulating Environment
The traditional workplace is anything but stimulating, but this has changed in the past few decades. The emergence of a fresh corporate culture in companies like Google and Apple signaled the dawn of a new era where it was more important to think creatively than to necessarily produce a viable idea. These environments reward the best questions over the best answers. encouraging a bountiful crop of fresh ideas as well as more than enough energy to see the best ones through.
Productivity can never result in an atmosphere heavy with criticism, where everyone is focused more on who got it right than actually getting something done. Being right is a stifling responsibility that emits such toxic fumes. so much so that we can hardly see past the cloud of pride and pretense, even to see our own barren bravado. Learning and growing and generating anything of worth cannot happen when we think that we have nothing left to learn.
If Thomas Edison found not only comfort but also value in finding 10,000 ways that won’t work, then not always being right can’t be so bad. Once we realize that our world has moved past the age of black and white, right and wrong, we can move onto a much more productive plane. And this is the real win win situation, all around.