I’m pretty sure that you’ll quickly realise that this post was inspired by my drive to work this morning. The specific action that pricked my imagination? Non-indicating drivers! What have I become (or rather what age have I become) where this is the kind of thing that burns angrily in the pit of my moral stomach? OK, so it’s not specifically the issue of non-indicating whilst changing lanes, but what indicating has come to represent. Let me try to explain, and then I can try shoehorn it into a business message! Read on dear reader…
More often than not, and I include my righteous self in this group, most people indicate at the SAME time as moving – admit it, you know the technique, turning the wheel and letting your index finger brush against the indicator lever to create a wonderfully efficient move – “Look at me – I’m indicating, AND I’m changing lanes!” But the point of indicating is to let OTHER drivers understand what you are ABOUT to do, so that they can react. And by ‘react’ `I mean make space or slow down to support the drive in front with their manoeuvre. Let me say that again –
‘Indicating your intentions allows the stakeholders around you the opportunity to respond in a positive manner for the benefit of all’.
So what does this mean about using the ole ‘turn and lever’ technique? Well, it is pretty much useless – there IS no time for others to react to the warning.
But, and here’s the interesting thing, if drivers didn’t indicate at all, and simply slipped across into MY lane – I would be enraged! My middle-aged angry ‘tut’ would be quite audible! So why is continuing to do something that is, in essence, ineffective and useless still considered better than not doing it at all?
We’ll lets start by saying – IT’S NOT! The use of the indicator now is simply just a way to say “Coming Through!” or “Sorry about cutting you up!”. It’s become a way to ensure that there are no hard feelings, or disguise the real issue that there is no positive outcome other than to the driver them self; no WIN:WIN; no collaboration.
Outlook are often considered as a ‘safe pair of hands’ with our clients. NOT ‘safe’ because we are dull and unchallenging (on the contrary we are dynamic and actively seek change), but because we reach the project destination without cutting anyone up; getting to the final objective successfully, and with project management that made everyone on-board well aware where and when each decision and action was made and why.
Part of our success is the focus on using our client service ‘indicators’ as God (of agencies) intended – to add value and improve collaboration. To let all ‘road’ users on our project journey have the time, flexibility and ability to react to the many budget potholes, deadline speed bumps and requirement diversions that happen on a day to day basis.
So put the cruise control, sit back and enjoy the ride!