I was speaking with a friend today, when he mentioned that there are many days he asks himself if he actually is doing anything worthwhile. Has this MBA given us license only to think, and do nothing? Or in other words, has this MBA taken away our license to do, and perform just thinking? Are we good enough for powerpoint presentations only?
I don't completely agree with him, but don't disagree altogether either. I do understand that there are thinkers, there are doers, and then there are those who actually make things happen.
In a firm where I used to work earlier, my boss was believed to be an opinionated person. He was an MBA, ex-Mckinsey, had served as the head of a transnational high-impact organization, thereby gaining loads of exposure, and I admired him for what he had achieved. He once told me that I am a thinker, and I should become a doer. This post is not a measure of whether he was right or wrong about me at that time, but the point is, it did make me realize that not 'knowing' what you are 'thinking' should be 'done', can only work in the short term, if at all. In that discussion, I realized that doing is as important as thinking (and vice versa) - one of the key reasons why I quit to join another firm where I believed I will be much closer to 'doing' (and another key reason being the biking trip to Khardung La – covered here).
What I have realized is - there is a HUGE difference when it comes to thinkers vs doers. Doers do their fair share of thinking, but they do it on the fly; they think while they are doing. Let me break it down and let you decide which side of the track you are on. Are you on the side of the track where people get stuff done, or are you on the side where people think and dream about getting stuff done? It may sound confusing - what I am going to write now (primarily because even I am not clear what I mean).
Thinkers think that thinking is doing. They think that the act of thinking and “learning” is moving them closer to their end goal when in fact thinking (rather than doing) is blocking their progress. Thinkers know that they have to do in order to reach their goals, but they think that the act of thinking always precedes the act of doing. In reality, the act of thinking delays the act of doing. What thinkers don’t know is that the thinking that truly helps achieve goals is not really thinking at all (I know, I told you to bear with me). The thinking that helps achieve goals is actually doing in disguise. Thinking just to be thinking is counterproductive. It is when thinking becomes doing that thinking truly becomes productive. Do you think and learn just to do so? Or does your thinking and learning truly complement each other is the question!
Enough ‘thinking’ for the day – I should go and ‘do’ something – maybe ‘sleep’.