Fresh Meat!

Yay, New Guy!!!

No, not the terrible movie…

No, I’m not telling you to get a new boyfriend/husband.

The fact is, new people make you better.

There’s a study from the Kellog School of Business Associate Professor Katherine Phillips that delves into the advantages of diversity within teams. The research suggests that teams performed better when a newcomer was introduced to an existing team, even when the new ideas did not come from the new member.  This suggests, of course, that diversity in and of itself actually promotes productivity increases.

We’ve long believed that diversity promotes different perspectives and different thought processes which ultimately lead to better results. This does occur, but the reasons might be different than expected. We should always examine why we succeed rather than just why we fail. It appears that the new study by Professor Phillips shows that our success from diversity might be for a different reason all together than what we’ve long thought. New people make us dig deeper and perform better.

Obviously, this is important in a company setting; however, the challenge is to transition this into our personal lives. It’s no secret that people gravitate towards people like themselves. Heck, one of the most famous sayings in the world is “birds of a feather…” See.  I didn’t even have to finish it!

The study demonstrates that injecting someone different into a team makes that team perform at a higher level. Why not our own lives? With the understanding that diversity breeds elevated performance, why not interject a little diversity into the rest of your life?

I’m not talking about taking a different route to work, although some are in such a need of change that this might help, but maybe its listening to different music. How about listening to the guy on talk radio that thinks totally opposite of you rather than the guy who you know what he’s going to say before he gets the words out. What would happen if you have lunch at least once a week with someone from a different department than your own? How about going to a different blog from time to time?
The point is, it’s like a marriage; if two of you are exactly alike, you don’t need one of you.  You are better when you are challenged. You are better when you have to think.  Make sure you are challenged in every area of your life.
Find a new guy!  Keep pushing.  Keep Thinking!!!

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