I needed to have a watch battery replaced so went to the jeweler in the mall. He could not remove the back piece to access the battery, and instead referred me to a clock repairman. This person took one look at it, reached for a special implement, and had the new battery replaced in a matter of minutes.

It is amazing what the right tool can do for the job. Part of what makes someone an expert is not only their proficiency with advanced tools, but just their access to them. Instead, amateurs (and fools!) attempt to do complicated jobs with rudimentary equipment. What happens is a lot of aggravation and wasted time. It’s not just the professional talent that is added to the mix, but the use of sophisticated tools in their experienced hands.

> Even a landscaper would struggle trying to prune hedges with a small clipper or compass saw instead of their electronic hedge trimmer

> A graphic designer would be frustrated trying to make a professional flyer in Word instead of InDesign or PhotoShop

> A seamstress would spend considerable time repairing a garment by hand instead of with a machine

> A painter would leave streaks and make a mess if she attempted to paint a wall with a brush instead of with a roller or spray

> A calligrapher’s work would not look nearly as beautiful with a Sharpie as with a nib pen expressly made for that purpose

Often we struggle and forge ahead, trying to accomplish a task on our own instead of relying on professionals to use their tools to do the magic. We expect our determination and effort to compensate for the lack of true skill or effective tools to use in the endeavor when really we have two strikes against us from the start. 

Yes, it costs money to call in the pros, but we always forget the price of our time and aggravation. 

beth triplett

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

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