Nothing is on fire


Methinks you need something better to do

Some folks describe their day job as “putting out fires.” Consider avoiding these people at all costs. They harbor a deeply troubling point of view on the nature of work (Don’t get sucked into the vortex) and it might be contagious. Because the simple truth is this: Nothing is on fire.

Unless you work in a kitchen, or on an oil rig, or drive a big red truck around, there’s probably nothing on fire at your place of work. Nevertheless, a knowledge worker will blithely deploy this incendiary metaphor for matters such as:

Who cares? There are such things as fires (you know, that thing that actually kills people and destroys cities) and none of these namby-pamby corporate trip-ups are fires. They are “oopsies” at best. No one cares about your company blog.

And putting out fires isn’t that noble when these “fires” keep happening. So consider doing less (Own fewer, better things). Or focusing on the right metrics (Avoid faster, cheaper, or “better”). Or seek out a compromise (All endeavor requires compromise) that’s easier to achieve.

Instead of running around with a fire extinguisher, maybe put down the matches and the megaphone. Unwarranted urgency may be causing these “fires” in the first place.