Work versus achievement

“Never mistake activity for achievement.”  John Wooden

It is crucial that we know what we do and why we do it. It’s sounds logical, but I found out that it is not so clear to many people… Often we can see good, hard-working people doing their best to produce things, that should not be produced at all. Things that have often opposite effect to one that was required or expected.

If you do not believe me, just look around and you will find many examples. Reports that nobody reads, documents that are stored for ages without any clear reason, software functionalities that are never used.  In my opinion, it very well may be the most important lesson on activity we can learn. We should always ask ourselves why we are doing what we are doing and is it OK?

I know many people, and I am one of them, who when confronted with growing number of requests will get into this special “operational mode”. In this mode we are processing very efficient request after request. We are so preoccupied with processing the requests that there is very little time, very little space left to reflect. In the end, after whole day of hard-working when we will ask ourselves, what value did we created, or how much have we contributed to the main objective, we will see that often the answer will be “not so much”…

Therefore, we should have an alarm system. Whenever we are so busy that we have not time to reflect, it is sure sign to stop for a moment and re-evaluate what are we doing and why are we doing it. This way we have much bigger chances to protect ourselves from one of the biggest time killer in our life, being enthusiastically engage in activities that do not lead to any value creation.