Thursday, November 12, 2009

In pursuit of the Trim-tab factor

Change is great and is inevitable. You can’t run from it and ignore it. The more you fight it, the worse you will feel. So how do you make yourself feel happy about being part of a change? Yesterday I talked about my focus on spending more time on Quadrant 2. If I need to do that I need to change and I need to fight some habits that continue to eat into my quality time.

Richard Buckminster Fuller, a famous American architect, author and designer is credited for the “trim-tab factor” concept that’s often used in leadership, change and management training programs. Imagine a large ocean liner. If you need to turn this big vessel in a new direction, it would need a lot of effort. Fuller says, “You see the whole ship go by and then you see the rudder. And there's a tiny thing at the edge of the rudder called a trim tab. It's a miniature rudder. Just moving the little trim tab builds a low pressure that pulls the rudder around. It takes almost no effort at all.” The trim tab is tiny compared to the size and weight of the ship, yet it is the trim tab that determines the ship’s course. Your efforts to slightly change the trim tab can eventually changes the whole direction of the ocean liner.

Change requires us to get out of our comfort zone, build new habits and leave behind the old. Knowing that I want to make a change in my life is the first right step towards self improvement. Awareness creates opportunities. I need to spend more time to find that trim-tab so I can get excited about Change. That can help me to create effective Quadrant 2 time management. I need to move my behavior in a new direction so I can increase Quadrant 2 and plan better. So the discovery goes on…

As always, below are a few links to help you learn more about trim-tab.

1 comment:

Nif said...

Hi, Joe. Thanks for the link. You will find that the trim tab is not just one thing, but many small things that make a big difference. One of mine is my kitchen sink. If I keep it empty and clean, it seems that I want to clean everything near it... thus leading to a clean kitchen! :)
Best wishes,