Up and to the right

The typical performance chart has two axes. And one is time. We can’t do anything at all about time, so there’s really one axis.

How fast did your profits grow?

How many followers did you add to your account?

How much muscle did you add to your calves?

The problem with a graph that only has one axis is that it’s dumb. No room for nuance. It’s a blunt instrument, easy to game.

If you want your profits to go up faster, simply cut corners. If you want more followers, buy them, or lower your standards, or pick a fight. And if you want to add muscle faster, sacrifice your health…

Adults are better off realizing that we have the patience and intelligence to measure our lives on two or more axes. Which means that instead of just one quadrant, there are four. That maybe it makes sense to choose to pursue something longer term, more resilient, more important.

That maybe the metric that was chosen for everyone isn’t really the metric you care about it.


PS Applications are now open for the next session of the altMBA. Today’s the Early Deadline, and the best chance to set your sights for 2020 (yes, it’s almost 2020). The altMBA is a powerful, proven approach to leveling up and making work matter.