From early childhood, we learn that it’s good to be right. It is accompanied by a unique feeling of our greatness and (hopefully not) superiority over others. When we are wrong, we feel bad.
Years later, however, we see that it is not always possible to be right. It is downright unhealthy if we always get our own way and want to dominate all discussions. It is worth noting here that knowing a given topic and proposing a solution to a problem is something other than applying pressure to make our idea chosen because we are wonderful and all-knowing.
For years, I felt that you have to strive to be right. Especially in the way of meeting customer requirements or in doubts about projects. I even thought that ultimately the right one was more involved and productive, and his idea was realized.
It doesn’t matter
It didn’t really matter who’s the solution was chosen. Often, instead of thinking about the good of the project, we all want to prove that we are better and know more about the topic than others. Instead of listening to what the other side wants to say, we already have thoughts about what we will say to interlocutors.
Without a common view of the problem, the best solutions often go undiscovered. They were ignored due to the tug of war between people who wanted to influence the project. It is possible that if we all tried to solve the problem and not prove our influence, we would have got better solutions. Ultimately, this has no positive effect on the customer. What counts for him is a well-implemented project that meets his expectations.
One might want to be right just to show himself as the better one, more knowledgeable about the subject. If we want to prove our importance in the company in this way, sooner or later, we will alienate others. Developing software (and other activities) is teamwork. Without thinking in the category of us instead of me, sooner or later, there will be very hard-to-solve problems between team members.
Empathy is very closely related to the topic. It is the ability to understand the other side. It is the ability to walk into another person’s shoes and see the problem from their perspective. Instead of trying to prove something, it’s better to start by understanding and solving the problem.
Our attitude can make a huge difference in problem-solving. Every day we should practice our technical skills and take care of the development of soft skills. We should place particular emphasis on communication, empathy, and understanding of others.
For some time, I have been trying to let others can prove themselves. I am much more pleased with the success achieved together and the smile on the other person’s face. Achieving a solution together is also an excellent way to share knowledge and achieve better results.