Instant Remedy

Almost all problems “get worse before they get better.” Whatever remedies you want to use cost resources, and the benefit is usually far from instantaneous. If you get a headache and you buy some aspirin, there will be a period of time when you still have a headache, and you’re down the cost of the aspirin to boot!

With the headache example, it’s easy to see the error in judgment when someone complains that their pain hasn’t vanished the very second they swallowed the pill. With more complex examples, it might be trickier. If your monthly earnings report is bad so you implement some changes, the next month’s earnings report might still be bad. That doesn’t mean your changes aren’t working, or that you need to do something else. It just means that remedies take time.

Try this: before implementing any remedy, take a few moments and write out what you would expect it to look like if the remedy works – including the time frame. You probably won’t write “I expect that our productivity in the department will instantly triple the literal second we announce this policy,” any more than you’d write “I expect my headache to instantly vanish the second I swallow a pill.”

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