off-script | How going off-script can help project managers adapt to change

Lately, in jiu-jitsu, I have noticed my game starting to resemble my professor’s game. Because he teaches a curriculum, I can regurgitate that material well but find myself not pushing those boundaries. off-script, It is similar to a child starting to learn a language. He or she uses adult words with no concept of their meanings but uses context clues to make sense of it.

Online sources are frowned upon as they show fancy techniques that do not necessarily translate appropriately. I tend to stick to the material that I find I can perform well, but I get frustrated in my lack of creativity.

I only know what I see, and that limitation has its positives and negatives. The positives are I know it works, otherwise, it would not be a part of the curriculum, and the repetition of it engrains the material in my mind. Knowing material that works and is repeatable is a strong suit.

However, when movements are outside of what I am aware of, I become lost. I do not have the acumen to adjust on the fly. A new movement means someone is not following the script. Therefore, I am lost because the script is all I know. This refined focus helps my foundation but makes growth difficult.

Going off-script brings that rapid growth as anything performed outside the lines is brand new and knowledge is gained immediately. There are many light bulb moments when off-script movements and actions take place.

Here is how project managers can go off script more often:

Perform your routine differently

I am a creature of habit. Same breakfast. Same route to work. The same routine once I am working. It limits the decisions I have to make on an hourly basis.

However, that routine can be performed differently. Instead of orange juice, banana, and coffee, I could have coffee first, eat my banana on the road, and sip some orange juice during the drive. The results are the same but performed differently.

This rework of the routine may include additions or subtractions. You may always check your email first when arriving at the office. You find this starts the day appropriately and gets tasks done quickly. However, this automatic checking of your inbox may be distracting you from tasks that need your attention most.

Is there a conflict amongst team members that you continue to put off because you have a checklist to complete first? That checklist is never-ending because emails and phone calls continue to pour in throughout the day. Your routine of checking your inbox before everything else may be hindering your ultimate growth.

Take your time

Weigh your options, then make a decision. Take the time to think it out and see where each one takes you. Reacting may be comfortable for you. This breath of air makes you uncomfortable but can lead to a better decision.

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