“Can Do” Attitude Dilema
The problem that I have is where this attitude ends and where one’s experience starts. The experience that tells you what you should not be doing because it’s very likely going to fail. My feeling is that with all the lessons learned I am more and more becoming the “Can’t be done this way” guy. Not that I would be pessimistic, not at all. I am usually very positive, enthusiastic, motivated and I like the work I do. But I do have a tendency to avoid mistakes I saw and search for other ways that have perhaps a better chance of succeeding. I try to learn from mistakes that I or others make. Does this actually make me less valued? A show stopper? After some years and quite some big projects I can smell problems. I can see them sometimes as concrete as a chair I sit on because I have experienced the same few times before while others blindly believe that “can-do” attitude will help to overcome the problem (which – unsurprisingly – often leads to painful failures). For smaller companies which do not have that long history I can even see generations of solutions and yet new problems ahead, because for others who went through it it’s the past already.
So I sometimes feel helpless. I sometimes feel like trying to explain to children that they should enjoy their school-age, because later on in their lives they would love to be able to return to that wonderful naïve and carefree age (I am sorry for those where it does not apply though). There’s no way they can grasp it as there’s no way they can understand the problems adults are facing. I didn’t understand my parents either. And the same goes with corporate experience which makes me feel “old” to be a “can-do” guy in the sense I see around me. More in the sense of irresponsibility, blindness and ignorance. I feel to be more the “parent” guy – using experience to foresee consequences before taking actions.
I don’t want to make an impression of being the “know-it-all” type of a person. I am just honestly wondering how to mix positive attitude and apply experience at the same time, and try to pass on the experience to others as well.
Did experience make you much more problems aware or have you remained easy going enthusiastic easy-goer? If the former, how do you point out problems without being perceived as a skeptic? Anybody?