Home » General » A Few Myths to Ponder [opinion]

Jason and the Golden Fleece, Hercules, Arachnae are myths from long ago, stories that entertain but probably have very little substance to them.

Great to listen to, but, apart from serving as a warning not to annoy the gods, not very practical.

Our world is filled with modern myths. These masquerade as truth and at first glance even seem useful but in the long-term they fail you. Here are a few that you may recognise.

Myth 1: Busy equals productive. This myth is founded in creation of daily “to-do lists”, endless meetings and majoring on the minors. I can be busy playing computer games but it is not going to create anything meaningful. Answering emails keeps me busy, it just may not help me ship a product on time.

Myth 2: Multiple qualifications make better employees. We are engaged in this paper chase with the illusion that it proves competence. It just proves knowledge. Knowledge does not translate into attitude or necessarily skill. There are many surgeons in the world I would never allow near me with a scalpel.

Myth 3: That you can continually rip people off and it never catches up with you. There are seven billion people on the planet. If you rip off one person a minute every day it would take you over 13 years to pull a fast one on every person in the world, and it takes a lot longer than a minute to pull a fast one. Strangely though this is just not practical. Sooner or later you will meet one of the persons you stole from, sold a dud phone to, inflated a price, and demanded a bribe from. I remember the time the school bully walked into my office for a meeting. He needed something from me I was the one in control. We were civil, polite even, inside I was seething with revenge, and he got nothing.

Myth 4: That success is measured by what you have and you have to have it now! New cars, new phones, new clothes, the best housing options are a must. You spend more time trading up your assets than actually maintaining your business. You spend a fortune getting things that you do not really need. Status symbols flood your life in an attempt to show your success. Inside you are empty.

Myth 5: Success is all that matters. Think of a successful sportsman. Now ask “Are they significant?” What do they add to the world apart from their skill and moment in the limelight? A few engage in development or programmes that benefit communities or lever their success into significance. What real changes are you making in your family, your community, your country? Significance is a much bigger challenge, and outlasts you. Mother Theresa was significant we still talk about her influence and lessons today.

Myth 6: There is a magic wand to fix your business. We all want a quick fix. This ties in with Myth 7: That Big Dreams just Happen. Nothing just happens. Throughout the world there are drawers filled with unpublished manuscripts, a repository of the great ideas that made their way onto paper. Self publishing has never been easier, but it still takes effort to make it happen, effort to market it and get it to sell. There is no effective substitute for hard work, work involving energy expenditure.

There may be a smarter way of doing the work (for example using a lever rather than picking up a rock) but none the less it is still work. Most of the time we know what is required. Deep down we really know the price that needs to be paid. We just think it is too hard and medicate the pain of not doing anything with a barrage of rational excuses.

Myth 8: You can ignore the individual for the masses. The masses are made of individuals, it their personal experience that turns them into fans. Real customers that last long-term have an individual experience with your product that leaves a lasting impression. Focus on the individual, one person at a time and you may lift your head up one day and realise that you are leading a crowd.

A few myths to ponder this week. What are your experiences with each of them? Have you got a particular myth that you have busted. Drop me a line.

Source : The Herald