One of the root causes of all kinds of problems in our organizations can be traced back to simply not following instructions. It is a common source of frustration for managers and leaders.
As I pondered this phenomenon that can inadvertently have disastrous consequences, I began to reflect on my own behaviors. My nature is to be a “rule follower" and follow the directions of others carefully; however, I realized that I do or have done things that are against the grain of being a good instruction follower.
I like to cook but not bake. Why? Baking requires exact measurements and the following of directions. General cooking allows a lot of room for creativity and freedom; a pinch of this and a pinch of that, so much fun. Is this why some don’t follow instructions? Is there desire to be independent and creative?
I was trying to do something in PowerPoint and although I knew I could get step-by-step instructions and complete my mission efficiently, I fought the notion for 20 minutes. I clicked around, determined to figure it out without instructions. I finally caved, used the robust help feature and got clear step by step instructions on how to complete my objective. WHY did I do this?
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