Find a balance between theory and practice, management and execution


You need to be more possibilistic. I know you have experience. You’re an expert in your field. Yes, you’ve been working on all kinds of projects: big and small, narrow and wide, complex and simple. I understand when you say you have an intuition and you can quickly find potential solutions and good roads to take. But when you stay on the surface of things you are not evolving as a professional. You might move to a more strategic role or even management but when you stop doing fieldwork you are missing a lot of opportunities.

Technology becomes more and more complicated and complex. Although design principles and sound mental models are the best equipment for a professional, in any field, detaching yourself from daily practice is risky. You become slow with tools because they change rapidly so you risk spending more time learning new tools from scratch rather than producing value. You weaken your capability to combine simple parts into complex ones to face complexity with complexity. When you don’t dedicate hard, intense, and deep work to a project you stop getting insights, refining your skills, and taking the chance to move your discipline further.

I am not saying you should go back to the front line to build the bricks, one by one, to raise a wall. But a good part of your working time should be involved in getting your hands dirty.

It’s the best way to constantly learn, refine your expertise, getting a chance to share your knowledge with others, putting your creative skills to hard work. And this keeps you alive, up-to-date and, maybe, you could even have the satisfaction and the fun of having accomplished something difficult and beautiful.

Get out of the office, put down your phone and see if you can do some practical work in your field, you’ll have immense benefits.


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