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  • Writer's pictureEd G.

Let's Break Some Rules

Some Rules Make Sense

We should be okay with breaking some rules. And, if done for the right reasons, it feels good, catalyzes change, and challenges us to rethink our paradigms.


I'm in Phoenix for the User Group Summit and was at lunch with a group. One person in the group wasn't feeling great and asked for the kid's portion of the Mac n' Cheese. I could tell by the nervous waitstaff that this was going to be a thing (there were no kids in our party).

Soon after, the manager came over and told us that we couldn't order the kid's portion because "it was against the rules", but they could offer us the side dish portion which is the same size, and (wait for it) the same price.

So, we called it a 'side dish' instead of the 'kid's portion' and everyone was happy...except, to me, that interaction caused needless friction in an otherwise 'nice' dining experience.

Break Rules Like A Boss

A suggestion for next time: Ring it up as a side dish. Bring a side dish. Call it a side dish. Or don't. Break a rule and bring a kid's portion and watch calamity ensue. It will be okay and maybe something fun and new will come of it.

In the corporate world, we have a tendency to do things simply because we've always done them that way...even if it's broken. These broken processes become rules which govern other processes, fetching even more rules and causing the fault line of nonsense to drive itself deeper into your organization.

Stop it.

If it doesn't make sense, then don't do it. Challenge those around you to think about what these rituals represent. Wear jeans when it's not a Friday, experiment with a new email signature, or ask "Why?" before doing something you've always done. It will mean something, and a little chaos is fun.

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