At some point in time we have all been in such a covfefe that we have made a mistake that has cost us. Some of us live in a constant state of covfefe resulting in chaos all around. Before I go further I should explain. Covfefe was originally used by President Trump in one of his Twitter posts earning him a great deal of ridicule from many people. However, I think it indicates a real problem, and I am going to put forward an official definition.
“Covfefe (n): An indicator of stress, shown when an individual is unable to focus on the current task due to preoccupation on what comes next, resulting in an error.”
How often do we fail in what we are trying to achieve, and have maybe been planning to achieve for a long time because we are focused on what comes next? How many details do we miss every day while we are trying to get to the next project? Why do we have so many tyops, or elimin8 lttrs? The answer is that we struggle with covfefe, and prioritise task completion above performance excellence.
There is a quote that I see pop up once in a while which I think has some relevance here:
“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” – Stephen R. Covey.
How do we plan to communicate and respond effectively if we don’t listen? How often has miscommunication due to covfefe caused problems in a relationship? Has any husband ever had his wife complain that he doesn’t listen and his mind is on something else? Yes – he’s covfefing. As a species we create labour-saving devices that “give us back time” and end up exacerbating covfefe. I remember the claim when Blackberry first introduced their phones to the world that it would “give us back” 20 minutes a day. Really? Where is it? I must have missed enjoying it while I was reading my email on the go as I was covfefing to the next task.
Here are the three take aways for today:
1 – In a world where the result often matters more than the performance, how much more important does resisting the urge of covfefe become? I have met many people who are more concerned with looking like they are doing well than actually doing well. They covfefe, cut corners, and never actually focus on real results. They almost always get exposed as charlatans when it falls apart.
2 – When you are a coaching a team and you want to win rather than develop, or you want to gain a promotion, earn a new contract, or benefit from whatever rides on your performance, how easy is it to rush through steps and processes in a quest for the big goal? Results tend to last as long as the time it takes to get them.
3 – How many people have you worked with (or maybe you yourself) who have skipped an ethical corner in order to meet a goal, skipping a few details on the way because the big picture is more important. How often is more time spent back-tracking and fixing the problem that it would have taken to have done the task right the first time.
Or, for example, let’s say you’re the leader of the free world and you use a certain social media platform regularly. Maybe, just maybe, covfefe is something you should try to resist.
I remember a phrase my grandparents used to use when I messed something up “More haste, less speed.” Basically, the more you rush to get something done, the more likely you are to mess it up, and it will take longer to get it done than it would have if you had taken just a little more time and care to do it right the first time.
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