“I Want to Buy That Rock”

This blog is inspired by a recent conversation with a friend of mine who shall remain anonymous

Many of you will know this classic scene from The Simpsons, when Homer celebrates the expensive “Bear Patrol” created by city government as an overreaction to a single bear getting into the city:

Homer: Not a bear in sight. The Bear Patrol must be working like a charm.
Lisa: That’s specious reasoning, Dad.
Homer: Thank you, dear.
Lisa: By your logic I could claim that this rock keeps tigers away.
Homer: Oh, how does it work?
Lisa: It doesn’t work.
Homer: Uh-huh.
Lisa: It’s just a stupid rock.
Homer: Uh-huh.
Lisa: But I don’t see any tigers around, do you?
[Homer thinks of this, then pulls out some money]
Homer: Lisa, I want to buy your rock.
[Lisa refuses at first, then takes the exchange]
above is linked from The American Prospect, worth a read


On the back of this recently I have had some people making some very large claims that they reduced a lot of the workload and saved a company money via some work that they have done. This sounded plausible as they have been quiet and yes ‘they’ have recently done some ‘work’ unfortunately just like homer their argument was specious:

Needless did they realize that actually they have also recently changed lots of system based issues and changed their pricing and also over forecast and are generally quiet at this time of year. Others have basically worked very hard on a lot of the system(not just one thing) for which we knows drives 95% of the performance. These changes have actually made this business more efficient and effective at work and therefore quieter, not the work these specific people have done, the only good work at best they have done is good timing to piggyback onto the other work that has been going on all over the business and being able to promote theirs more loudly than others.

The staff see the benefits of it been quiet more time for them to spend with customers, more time to develop and do other things and so like homer will believe some specious arguments if presented at the right time. It doesn’t make them right however.

It’s like me putting you in the middle of ibiza (a Balearic island) off the coast of Spain which is guaranteed around 296 days per year of sunshine and giving you a bracelet and saying as long as you wear that bracelet in Ibiza you will get 296 days of sunshine.

Then I come back and say “see that sunshine bracelet is working nicely keeping it sunny and then flogging and advertising it and people buying it based on these specious claims. It was going to be sunny anyway.

You will all know of a situation at work you have all faced like this or being in a presentation which should have been titled “bulllshit” or “bleeding obvious”

20130828-231024.jpgπŸ‘†πŸ‘†If it feels like specious, looks like specious and smells like specious it’s probably specious

There should be one thinking and purpose with everyone and I mean everyone driving towards this to continually improve and achieve this

Stop looking for the magic wand and get in amongst your work, know what’s going on and raise capability and reduce failure.

Orrrrrrr you could just do this this……

Roll up roll up buy my rockπŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡πŸ‘‡

20130828-233323.jpgdon’t be a homer and buy it please


This entry was posted in Purpose, Systems Thinking and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to “I Want to Buy That Rock”

  1. Pingback: Reading Digest: Must Be Labor Day Edition | Dead Homer Society

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