Ego and Widgets


I have never met anyone that was puffed up by their ego that could be objective about anything.  When we get a case of the “by gods” we loose ourselves to anger, arrogance, and objectivity.


Seeking that which would validate your opinion vs. looking for the truth; no matter what it is, is by nature our folly.  We are so prejudiced by our “feelings” to the point of severing ties with people that we care about who happen to see things differently.  We will go so far as to sever relations with those who think differently than us, because of pride.


There is strength in diversity.  A bunch of like minded people will convince each other that they are correct and everyone else is a fool.  We see this all over the globe in all sorts of situations.  Once we make up our minds about something, we for the most part stop looking for the truth and will vehemently fight for our particular slant on the facts.  When facts are provided that would disprove our opinion we tend to argue the validity of the facts and even question things like the scientific method.


The early church did this with Galileo.  They believed that the sun revolved around the earth and the earth was the center of everything.  As the early church was the de-facto authority for any questions about any subject; anyone who dared to disagree with them may very well face the noose or the sword. They were the government, the school and of course the one and only way to heaven. Very prideful people which reminds me of a story…


There was this fellow that built a business.  He built it by the sweat of his brow, constantly honing it, making gentle course correction to achieve optimal penetration into his particular niche.


A lot of the employees were either impressed by him or alienated by his sometime brute force approach to problems.  When the business became too much for one person to manage it was decided to bring in an assistant.  The board members (people who provided the seed money) insisted as they were looking out for their investment.


For a while things were rocking along nicely until the two disagreed over policy or procedure.  One person being stogy, and rigid, and self righteous; while the other person wanting to try something new or different. Words were said that should not have been said and the lot was cast when forgiveness was not asked for or offered until it was too late. These facts were not told to the employees but they all knew something was up, as one of them would be gone for long stretches at a time.  The product was not as radiant as it once was, and the customers were really not getting what they were paying for; as the quality was lacking.  The machine in fact was broken because of arrogance and pride.


The Board of directors, keeping up with the P&L, took stock of these numbers and were very much concerned that their investment was going down the tubes.  Having absolute power over the main players, they decided to get rid of both of the managers, as neither one was capable of getting past the events that had transpired.  While they were there; neither one was doing their jobs with any alacrity, so they were handed their hats and asked to leave.


The value of the stock was slipping and the competition was picking up new customers as people are not only apathetic but fickle. We are quick to judge and form an opinion and then act on it, with virtually no facts, no truth, just hearsay.


One of the leaders started over again, and the other just simply left as he knew that his actions had damaged the company, their product and the satisfaction and trust of the customers.


The Board of directors looked long and hard to replace the leaders but the niche market for these widgets is narrow and hard to find qualified people who understand this particular widget and all of the intricacies that go with it.


In the meantime the employees picked sides and when the leaders were let go, many went and looked for other employment with other companies as they did not trust the board of directors or agree with their actions.   Some stayed however as they were not there for the leaders, but the product, and how much the customers needed and enjoyed the product. They were of course saddened to see the managers leave but the true focus of the company was not on the men that started it; but the widget!


In time the company got production going again.  They hired new employees and found new customers to buy the product.  Some of the old employees were unhappy with this and sent terrible hurtful letters to those that stayed, because those that stayed were not willing to strike and walkout like they were.  The people that stayed were looked upon as “scabs” or strikebreakers.  The employees that left were truly angered by those that crossed the picket line as their battle should be everyone’s call to action (or so they thought).  Those who crossed the picket line cared for the greater good, the customer and the survival of the company.  They did not want to see another Hostess episode after all.


The widget factory survived because the majority of the people trusted the board of directors and knew that the widgets must be made and sent out on time.


The employees that left still had bitter feelings toward the company and those people that stayed behind, relations were severed.  I think that they even took a dislike to the widget which they once were very fond of.  When they saw one another in the street, they snubbed their once fellow co-worker.  Had they trusted in the “board of directors” and not given their allegiance and “faith” to a single human being, the widget factory would never have experienced this loss of production, hence lack of profit and the customers would not have had to go look for widgets of unknown quality elsewhere, and relationships that were built over years and years would not have been destroyed.


When ones ego gets too inflated, it pops. When it blows up, there is lots of collateral damage, innocent people get hurt.    When you use the nuclear option to settle an argument with your neighbor, you may very well take out the entire city.


Your perception of the facts may be inaccurate. You were not there when the original “event” went down, so you really don’t have anything but conjecture and hear say to act upon.  For some that is enough.  Before you kill off Little Debbie by your willingness to act on few facts, please keep in mind that like Hostess, that company has been around for years and has graced the lunch box of many children for generations.  What would the world be like without Little Debbie, or the Widget?


-Best to you and those that you care about.





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