There is always someone out there who possesses unique viewpoints or expertise. I’m not talking about situations in which someone of a given discipline knows more than his or her peers. I’m talking about someone from a different discipline who, by virtue of his or her training or experience, sees a problem from a different perspective than others.
I recently visited the factory of a company with which I’m partnered. At this particular facility, an engineer was responsible for predicting how the materials that were being fabricated would behave.
A skinny young welder at the same factory volunteered privately to us that he didn’t believe that the parts being fabricated were going to work as intended. In the real world, the welder told us, there wasn’t going to be enough room for the mechanism to spin the way we needed it to spin.
We brought the welder’s comments to the attention to the engineer, who was livid that a mere welder would criticize his diagrams and information. The welder proved to be correct, though.
To be fair, the welder lives in the “real world” everyday. He knew from hands-on experience what would work and what wouldn’t. Fortunately, we listened to him.
So, as you are working hard every day to build your company, or as you’re building your career, make sure that you don’t listen only to “the experts,” or people from one discipline. Be sure that you seek out other points of view and other perspectives.