TIM-ISM #5

THERE IS NOTHING MORE UNCOMMON THAN COMMON SENSE

Certainly a much-used expression when people don’t complete a task the way YOU think it should be done. One thing that most people don’t know is…….

that “common sense” is a learned response to a certain set of circumstances. What is “common sense” to one person may not be so common to another. A simple example is best described by my wife’s choice of travel routes when going from one place to another. She will often choose a less direct travel path. When I asked “why” she took the long way, she replied that it was just “common sense” because it was quicker. I didn’t make sense to me so, of course, I asked her “How can that be”? “Taking a more direct route is shorter”. “Yes”, she replied “but my way has fewer stop lights and therefore is much quicker”. “That’s just common sense”. Not having taken her route, I had no idea that it was so much quicker than mine.

Ray Kroc’s idea to plant grass all around the parking lot of a new McDonald’s to determine where the sidewalks should go by the customers wearing out the grass, was common sense to him. To me, it was a stroke of genius!

Next time you suggest that “it’s common sense”, stop to consider that the person to whom you’re spewing may not have the experience nor the learning to make it “common sense” to them.

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