Have you known somebody that is continually changing the goals or rules for their department, company or relationships? Max Impact of getmaximpact.com in Rochester Hills, Mich., calls these individuals vibrators because like a washing machine that aggressively vibrates as it cleans these people and their departments are always busy but never get anyplace. And although the clothes get clean, there is a better way to do it.
How do you get someone to see the harm of being a vibrator? Think of playing a card game, such as Crazy Eights. You have been playing your high cards saving your eights until near the end of the hand. You know if you can get rid of all your cards except the 8s you will be invincible. However, just as you play your last non-8 the dealer changes the rules, making 2s the wild card. Suddenly your entire strategy changes and you have to start over.
At a training session in a Detroit-area GM facility this exercise was done. Participants in the session started playing a game of Crazy Eights with two important caveats: they could not talk and one player at each table had been given a different set of rules.
The group quickly figured things were not going well. Then they vibrated. Some tried to play by the new rules but thought the old rules were better. Some refused to change their ways, instead they clung to the old rules and fully expected others would see the old rules were better. Others just gave up.
Vibration is bad for an organization and vibrators, although well-intentioned, are undermining their organization.
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