Going outside to go inside is something we should all seek to do.

Its called perspective.

Yet in this, it is so easy to think one has perspective when in the end, somewhere along the line, they’ve lost perspective.

When I oversaw a chain of bookstores, a few of them were located in a mall. I loved this as it gave me the opportunity to take our managers outside into the mall so we could then return back inside our store a short while later with something in hand… renewed perspective.

As we would walk through the mall, I would casually talk with the store manager about how they were doing, how the staff was doing, and just life in general. Along the way, I would subtly point out other stores as we quickly walked by and made brief observations of what caught my eye at quick glance.

As we would begin to draw close back at our store, I would always abruptly stop. Generally, this would be about 50 feet from the entrance and I would ask one question.

What do you see?

Way too often, we fail to go outside.

In this, I propose that by not seeking to go outside “your” world from time to time will severely stunt your ability to truly gain critical perspective about how one is doing on the inside.

When I was running several companies, I sought outside perspective all the time. Though they who I sought on the outside did not share with me that which was on my inside, what they shared was a perspective on something I needed to help grow me on the inside.

So, I poured myself into books by authors from all walks of life, I poured myself into others who have lived in all walks of life, and essentially in this.. went outside to go inside.

What was always amazing to me was as I would stand there 50 feet outside of the store with the manager, just how much they would see on the inside of their store that they didn’t see previously on the inside of their store.

And so it goes with organizations, brands, and products alike, sometimes its okay to step outside your “expertise” to gain critical perspective that will only grow your expertise.

In doing this, I woud propose that it will make you better. In doing this, it will help sharpen your focus, expand your reach, remove barriers from potential prospects, and quite frankly just make you better because you were willing to do it.

When one is not, then I question the perspective you even have.

In the accounting world, its called an audit. In the perspective world, its called wisdom.

Whatever you choose to call it, I say do it.

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One response »

  1. Meg says:

    Oh how true this is. Beautifully put! This is what I strive for. It can be challenging, but that is how we grow. Thanks for such a great perspective.

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