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Get on Board!

17 September, 2010 Leave a comment

Ants (or sometimes more accurately, the colonies they form) are truly amazing.  Capable of incredible feats of engineering and teamwork (check out the tunnel structure in the 1st video).  Much of this is due to their ability to follow orders and work for the good of their colony, often as a priority over their own safety. But sometimes ants get in badly wrong because of just this strength (the 2nd video below is an ant circle or vortex, which is what happens when all the ants accidentally end up following each other – to their own exhaustion and death usually).

Ants Working Together & Ants Working Together

Having just come through the 9th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, the western world spent some time remembering these events, but others used the opportunity to raise their own beliefs and conspiracy theories that centre on those events.

Say whatever you like about the conspiracy theorists for Sept11 (or more generally), but they do represent an important feature that separates people from ants – some of us will question things even though there is a strong belief in a particular direction.

So……Think about the last time you were swept up in a massive initiative that was, even from very early on, an out of the park home run. It was probably a really simple idea that had built up great momentum – a juggernaut by the time it reached you…….Did you ask any questions (or chase down the answers to them) before you were caught up in the enthusiasm for the initiative?

Given my focus on performance and key performance indicators,  I find it very difficult not to ask myself a few questions about anything I see. – What is the ultimate goal here? How will we know that this initiative has been successful?  What targets have been set for this initiative to achieve?  How does this initiative align to other key objectives?
– People with different backgrounds/ perspectives will ask different questions based on their experience and the relevance of the initiative.

Asking those sorts of questions can be tough (on both the asker and askee) but the answers and the discussions they stimulate can make an initial good idea into a much stronger collaborative idea.

Ta
Keith

PS: ”In matters of style, swim with the current; in matters of principle, stand like a rock”  – Thomas Jefferson

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