Morfternight #44: Am I wrong?

We discuss the possibility I may need to change my mind. It feels good.

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This was quite an intro; let’s move on to what tickled my brain this week.

🌍 Am I wrong?

I have been thinking about how important it is to transition from measuring the value of work through the input (how much time you spend working), to output (how much work you did), to outcomes (what was the impact of your work).

I recently posted about that on my blog in an essay titled Fewer Managers, More Leaders: a Template for the Future of Work.

A few days ago, I listened to Marshall Goldsmith: The Essentials Of Leadership, an episode of the Knowledge Project Podcast.

It’s a short 90-minute conversation packed with valuable insights, and one point that resonated deeply with me was to

Never make your value as a human being conditioned on the results of what you’re trying to achieve.

That thought reminded me of my recent participation in Daniel Vassallo’s Small Bets workshop and his presentation of one of Nassim Taleb’s ideas:

We tend to underestimate drastically the weight of randomness over the outcomes generated by our actions.

The lesson is to focus on your actions and for each step to be the best you can make so that you can be proud of them all. The outcomes will follow eventually, and you’ll still be proud of your contribution whenever you fail.

In other words: focus on what you can control.

I am digesting these thoughts, trying to understand why they resonate so loudly and deeply with me even though they contradict the mental model I have been using and appreciating over the past few years. It is possible I was wrong.

What do you focus on when you measure the value of your actions?

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