Embrace the Law of Unintended Consequences

A recent post by Mathias Meyer titled "From Open (Unlimited) to Minimum Vacation Policy" has illustrated an important point when implementing any sort of change in a company. Embrace the law of unintended consequences.

Many times in my career I've seen good intentions end with poor results. As a leader, you're doing what you think is right, but often times you overlook a detail that ruins the whole thing.

That's okay. Humans are pretty bad at predicting the future, especially when other humans are involved. Even when you make the right choice, the wrong reaction can occur.

The key is to understand that fact. Expect that the decision made will have results you didn't intend. Work to find out where you misjudged a reaction.

Take time after big choices to meet with those impacted by them, to figure out what they think about it. Don't assume that just because you meant well that it's enough.

People are fickle, and again, that's okay. Be on their side and work with them to improve and adjust the solution. Don't settle for a good intention. After all, "the road to hell is paved with good intentions".

Enjoy this content? Check out my upcoming book, The Non-Conformist Leader.