The Detail Dynamo

By | May 5, 2011

Looking at the large collection of liquids still being confiscated by TSA at airports made me wonder where travelers had been hiding to be oblivious to the size restriction rules, which have been in effect for years.

So I asked one of the agents the other day as I was getting redressed after inspection what was the most common reason people gave him for the oversized liquid containers.

He smiled and said most everyone tells him either they didn’t realize the item was in there or that the rules were still effect. He went on to say, “People just don’t pay attention.”

I had to ask about the unopened bottle of vodka and the bottle of Bloody Mary mix. He said the man told him in-flight drinks were too expensive so he was bringing his own. He kept pleading that it was OK because the seals hadn’t been broken. It didn’t matter. That was an expensive detail that passenger overlooked.

Later that day I received a free restaurant meal because the waiter failed to give the kitchen the correct order.

At the bar at that same place, two men and two women waited on tables to open. The ladies asked for the bar check, signed for it and went to their table. The bartender came back to see the two guys still sitting there and realized she thought all four were together. The ladies were charged for the drinks of the two guys as well. The lady paying didn’t even notice the error!

What is going on?

Our brains process information differently than they used to. We take shallow bites of information from the internet and the news channels. We multi-task to the point of distraction. We are doing things so much faster that we don’t go as deep in our thinking as we once did. Therefore, we are confusing details such as travel rules, order specifics, who is on what check AND paying a check without checking it!

To become known in the workplace is to be able to do something of value others don’t do well. As our society becomes more shallow in how it processes information, as it becomes less focused on the details, the person who is a detail dynamo becomes a significant asset.

Details are where great innovation begins. In the details are where problems can be prevented. In the details of every organization are significant savings waiting to be found. Become the Detail Dynamo or hire one on your team of talent to have a disappearing commodity that will become even more valuable as business moves even faster.

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