Will You Take My Watch With You?

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself,  and you are the easiest person to fool” 


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“The first principle is that you must not fool yourself,

and you are the easiest person to fool” 

– Richard P. Feynman

Someone was telling me recently that when they were about to go on a run, a friend asked if they would they take their Smart Watch with them.

When they asked why, the answer was ‘So that I can hit my daily target of steps’.

And the person didn’t see anything unusual about the request!

It made me think about the different types of people there are in the world.

Using the above analogy I think there are three.

1. The ‘Will you carry my watch?’ person

2. The ‘I’ll carry my own watch and be accountable for results’ person


3. The ‘I don’t really care about any watch or targets!‘ person

The first is all about appearances. Substance and accountability are secondary. They are the kind of person who will ask you to help with a project, only to step in a take all or the lions share of the credit.

The second is where you have real ownership and accountability. They will be responsible for their results.

And the third just don’t care and are quite happy for you to know it!

In the context of your overall life (personal and organisational), it’s important to minimise contact with and perhaps get rid of numbers 1 and 3. (or else wake them up, which can be hard to do..)

If someone isn’t willing to carry their own watch, my concern is that that kind of thinking will be present in other areas of their life and work.

Plus people who do carry their own watches, are generally much more fun and supportive to be around.

And I guess we all hope we’re the second type of person…

Food for thought…


ps – Based on last week’s email, it looks like a lot of people now like cream with their coffee…Have you tried it yet? 🙂

ps – If you’re a CEO or in a leadership position, you should enjoy my free weekly CEO Question Series. Every Tuesday on YouTube and Linked In.

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