Friday, October 30, 2009

The Dentist

The dentist I went to for eight years while in highschool and college was manned by a guy in his late 50s. I would walk in sit down and a hygienist would do all of the paperwork and cleaning. Every time I went Dr. McCullough would spend maybe 30 seconds looking at my teeth and then chat for 3 min and leave. “What did this guy do anyway?” I remember thinking. He got paid to spend 30 seconds on my teeth.

One day in his 30 second exam he stopped, he’d found a cavity. He pointed it out to the hygienist with 10 years of experience; chided her for not finding it. He found something in 30 seconds the hygienist didn’t find in 15 minutes. The hygienist did all the work, but the dentist had the knowledge. So do you want to be the hygienist or the dentist?

I recently have been promoted and my job is becoming more like the dentist. It’s a lot more responsibility, and a lot more is required. I’ve noticed a few differences I wanted to share with you:

The Buck Stops Here- As one in charge, you make the decisions. The higher you go up the tree the less you can rely on the past work of others. You have the final say and you’re responsible for the results.

Manage- Managing other people is important. It’s very interesting as you progress up how your attitude affects the attitude of those below you. You become the rudder for the ship and steer your crew to success or failure. Getting the most out of people and maintaining strong relationships is the number 1 tenet of a successful career.

Change- My favorite aspect is being the catalyst for change. It’s important to know what was done in the past, but now it’s your job to improve it. How can things be done better and with a better utilization of resources?

Big Picture- As you progress you become big picture oriented. What do the results mean to our project? How do we and use our results? What changes or decisions should be made based on our findings.

Become a Resource- The ones at the top are fountains of knowledge. They may not know the exact details, but they know how to do the jobs of those under them. They can teach and lead others to accomplish their tasks efficiently and effectively.

I’m still very low on the totem pole, but I’ve seen the beginnings of this idea as I’ve progressed in my career and it’s exciting. I enjoy making decisions it’s part of who I am and what I enjoy doing. I encourage everyone to step outside of their role and start to learn the affects of the information they process, or the job they do. As you gain a bigger picture you begin to become bigger than your role. That is a step for moving forward.

No comments:

Post a Comment