Thursday, January 02, 2014

Under Promise, Over Produce

It's the new year.  It's the time we make promises and whatnot.

(It's also the time that I quit going to the gym because everyone and their dog has started going to the gym.  I'll go back in a month. In the mean time I'll make it my cause – for all mankind – to gain all those pounds that people shed in January.  Then in February I'll give all those pounds back.  Recycling at it's finest, yes?)

We Rabids in the RabidFamily have a saying: Under Promise, Over Produce.

Under Promise, Over Produce.  It's all about keeping our word and then adding a little something on top.  It's about managing expectations with ourselves and with others.  It's about integrity.  Most important (-ly?), it's about walking more than we talk – we won't blabber on and on about how awesome we are.  We will sit back and let results do the talking.

That's how we try to roll.  Sometimes we roll better than others.  We also have a myriad of ranges for that try factor.

Some might criticize the work methodology of Under Promise, Over Produce.  They could claim that an Under Promise is what slackers and sandbaggers do.  This is true, and some folks might approach the Under Promise, Over Produce technique that way.  Not we Rabids though.  Our Under Promises include hard work and usually a stretch of character and/or skill.  Our Under Promises remind us that we are human and acknowledge our many limitations (the biggest being there are only 24 hours in each day), and our Under Promises ensure that we are conservative in our estimates.

Under Promise also means that you don't hit the finish line with a list of excuses.  There will be no "Sorry boss.  I didn't finish because I had a meltdown on the way out the door, all because the kids couldn't find their shoes, which meant I needed a nap, which meant that I couldn't finish my the extra eight TPS reports that I had promised, let alone the cover sheets, and then I lost my toothbrush."

Over Produce, on the other hand means just that... produce over that which you promise.  It means get in there, work hard, and kick ass.  Would you care for an example of said Over Produce-ing?  Of course you would!

Spouse and I were married four months before I found out he had a master's degree.  It was Memorial Day 2000 and we were moving into the house we have now.  While clearing out the goo from the back of his car, I stumbled upon a little certificate.  The certificate said, "We hereby present a Master of Science to Spouse in the field of Computer Science."  Or something like that.  He has it stuffed away somewhere (again) so I know not where it lies and cannot verify it's verbiage.

At the time I was confused.  I knew he had a CS degree but thought it was of the BS classification.  "Why didn't you tell me about this?" said I.  To which he said, "You never asked."  Meaning, I didn't phrase my question properly.  Somewhere along the one-year dating-line, I should have asked, "Dearly beloved Spouse, do you have an MS in CS?"  Shame on me.  And to my credit, you must know that a thorough background check with the law does not include educational echelons.  (That guy was squeaky-clean!  Not even a speeding ticket.)

Yes, that Spouse of mine is astutely understated when it comes to communicating his many accolades.  He's full of good surprises.

I've told this story to many.  Mostly because it illustrates the polarity of my combined marital experiences.  Surprises and revelations from Jimmy (the other guy that I was married to) were surprises that involved the selling and/or growing of various controlled substances.

Why all this fuss about Under Promise, Over Produce?   Well, right now I'm looking at the year 2014 and what I want to do with it.  I want to do lots with 2014.  It looks like I'll need a few extra months.

Stay tuned.  We'll see what I plan to Under Promise, Over Produce.


megan said...

and this my friend is why we get along so well...thank you for putting words to my life's work thus far...
(that and your bacon cards :)

Julia said...

Love this idea. Keep expectations low, then exceed them. I need to remember this.