Seth Godin talks about breaking things. No, I don’t mean physical things – Seth doesn’t strike me as a guy who goes around destroying stuff. He’s talking about systems, processes, ideas, status quos, and other ideas that need to be broken. There is no need for sacred cows. Sacred cows maintain the status quo. If all you do is maintain, how do you improve?
But how do you know what to change? How do you know if you are going to break something? How do you know if you are going to do something wrong? How do you know if you are going to offend someone?
You don’t. At least, not always.
You do something. You experiment. You iterate. You do it again.
Auditioning programmers? An experiment.
Did it work? Sure.
Can it be done better? Probably.
Will the next attempt be better? Maybe.
In his book Entreleadership, Dave Ramsey talks about validated learning. Yes, experiments are important, but have an idea of what you expect to learn as a result. This is not seeing what sticks to the wall. This is seeing if an action yields a particular result.
We often look to experts to tell us what to do thinking they have the answers. Sometimes they do. And sometimes, they learned their lessons from someone else. But many times, they were brace enough to experiment.
Have the confidence to experiment!