Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Creativity Tips: Define the Knock

Eric Morgenstern, one of the most widely and deservedly admired communicators in KC, had an interesting response to yesterday's post:

When there's a knock on your door, the key is to determine is it "opportunity" or an "interruption." If you listen closely, you can usually tell.  

Now, for someone like me -- easily distracted by shiny objects -- this is a critical point. It also reminded me of great advice I received years ago. I had moved into a management position, and was complaining (hard to believe) about all the interruptions. People were continually knocking on my door. My boss told me, "When you're in management, those 'interruptions' are part of the job. Stop thinking of them as 'interruptions.'"

With that perspective, I "heard" the knocks in a different way. Some were interruptions -- we didn't really need to discuss the weather. Others were truly part of the job. Either people needed input or answers, or they simply had to share something -- personal or professional -- before they could focus on the work at hand.

So, listen closely to the knocks. Define them accurately. Perspective makes the difference!

Shiny object alert: When my grandmother used to say, "Knock on wood," she would knock on her head.

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