This post is part of the going solo series, a compilation of posts hoping to motivate and support those who are championing change at their organisations.

Recently a friend in the Tableau community, Dave Kirk shared a story about an award he and his team received after implementing Tableau at work. What struck me was this:

“I personally struggled to enjoy the success.  It was recognition from people I respect and value, it was a great evening and a great award but I was troubled. To me it didn’t feel like a success – there were many things that we would have done differently with the implementation, there were still many things that we would like to do.

Not as many people were using the tool as we would have liked, it was difficult to find the content and when you got to the content it was sometimes overly complex.” Dave Kirk “The Value of a different perspective”

This made me go back 5-10 years really quickly.

Side Story – for years both in Portugal and in the UK, I used to play bass with covers bands. When I first started I used to get really annoyed at myself. Punters would come to us, buy us a pint or just a handshake to say they had a great night and I’d go into this drivel of an apology with details of where I missed a note and that it could be better etc… Unfortunately punters would usually look at me bewildered and the conversation would stifle very quickly.

I can now see how it felt to them, they got out of their way to congratulate us and I was putting a damper on it and turning the conversation into a negative/sour one.

The way we as a band overcome that was to decide collectively we would never ever do that again, not in public at least. The decision was that if you missed a note, go home and learn the song again, or up or your game at the next gig. If it was a collective issue, we would address it at the next rehearsal behind closed doors.

It made our gigs more enjoyable and ultimately no one really notices/cares if you hit a bum note. Some people call it jazz 🙂

How does all this relate to Dave’s comments? We are so embroiled in our own world that we forget to look up and see what’s around us or look back and understand our achievements from the eyes of those we help.

Sure, Dave knows that they are not producing state of the art dashboards and that some things were done in a certain way due to, resources (monetary or otherwise), lack of knowledge, or any other reason that at this point doesn’t matter.

It seems to me that Dave’s team has helped the organisation he works at so much that they feel it’s deserved of an award and public recognition. Of course hindsight is a great thing and if we could we would all have done something differently than we did. But alas no crystal ball is available and you can only play with the cards you’re given. Make the most of it and take pride that people around you are smiling and dancing.

Thank you for reading, until next time!

David