Monday, July 4, 2011

Lowest Common Denominators

I've been thinking about these lately. There are a few things I'm involved in where it's relevant. Some people like to be a big fish in a small pond. All well and good, if you like to shine in a lower quality environment where you're the best.

Personally I prefer to mix in a more challenging situation, where the standard is high but I can learn more, feeding off better quality team mates and hoping that their ability pulls me up. The recognition is less but the sense of satisfaction, the real achievement is usually greater.

Yet I find myself in a couple of teams where the opposite is the case, where I'm nearer the top as far as knowledge and ability goes. One of the issues that frustrates me is that in these teams the speed of movement and progress is dictated by the people near the bottom, those lowest common denominators.

The rest of the band has to wait for these people to catch up in their learning and knowledge.

It's a no brainer isn't it? Surely it's better to be the smaller fish in the big pond but to be open and big enough to know your own ability, to realise that you're learning, not to bluff and kid people (mostly yourself) that you're many rungs above the one you're actually on.

Or, on the occasions when I'm nearer the top of the ecosystem, should I be doing more to assert myself, maybe be more authoritarian. Maybe I don't have the confidence in my own judgement and ability. Perhaps I need to be bolder and ballsier.

Just thinking aloud really, but I'd be very interested to hear what any of you think about this. Do you think the rate of progress of a team is dictated by the highest level or the lowest level of performer within the unit?

1 comment:

. said...

with reference to your first statement, personally, i prefer associating friends who are smarter and more lived than I takes me places, widens my perspective and oddly I never feel intimidated by that... so i sort of get what you mean...