Don’t Ignore the Obvious!

Posted by TechGuru on January 14, 2010

Why do we not pay attention to obvious messages and statements? Why do we repeatedly fail to appreciate those who point out the obvious? What role do obvious statements have in our lives? These are not common questions, because many do not stop to ponder on them. The few who do pay attention to the “obvious” have a chance at being stupendously successful.

Gautam Buddha

ticking to the obvious with determination and conviction helps one shine as a person. Lord Gautam Buddha was just conveying an obvious message, but we all note his life’s work because he stuck to his core, albeit simple, beliefs. Mahatma Gandhi's message too screamed simplicity, but again we all remember it because Gandhi followed it to the end of his life. Obvious messages coming from accomplished individuals become powerful. Those same messages coming from next-door neighbors, friends, co-workers and family members are ignored because these people are not Gautam Buddha, Mahatma Gandhi, Bill Gates, or Warren Buffett.

Examples Mahatma Gandhiof obvious mantras coming from our parents, managers and coaches are "work hard," "stay alert," "ask questions," and "respect others." These statements skate right across our brains because they seem old, overused, and cliché. We are all guilty of ignoring obvious messages from people in our daily lives and people we equate ourselves with. That's why companies invite ex-presidents, superstars and many other successful individuals to speak at corporate events. Their delivery of such mantras sticks with us. The same goes for a college graduation ceremony; people considered influential are invited and requested to speak. This is because, as human beings, we naturally listen to people we look up to.

Problems and issues in our world often come up because people ignore the obvious. An employee gets fired from work because he or she fails to come to work on time,Warren Buffet abide by company rules or meet deadlines. These things are simple even to a person with an elementary school education. But those with college degrees seem to miss them. With a tad more diligence, they would have a much higher chance of success.

Finally, as programmers or software engineers, do we follow these key mantras? Many of us do not. How many times do we hear our managers say that we need to properly document our work and comment our codes? Almost every day! Still we do not listen to them and miss the obvious. My message is not to ignore the obvious if you want to grow as a successful engineer or manager. Trust me and try it. You will feel the difference in a week.