Pressure to Bend the Rules

September 16, 2009

I seem to have a trend in my blogs of involving some cliched quote.  Well here you go; “Rules are made to be broken.”  Well in the highly strung, overly cautious world we now inhabit, I think this is rubbish.

As a young professional, if you’re working for people that are predominately results driven, they will have little interest in the processes and procedures underlying the deliverable.  But I think you should.  I think that even though there may be time pressures, cost pressures or other variables, to bend or break the rules ultimately only leads to more trouble.

Ok, there are always exemptions.  Always situations where a bend is ok.  But we all know what happens if you bend the rules once.  They’ll expect it next time…because they know you can do it.  This has come back to bite me a couple of times.

What do I do?

  • Don’t do it if you can avoid it.  To help this, have the process communicated before hand.
  • Make it abundantly clear that it’s a one off.
  • Escalate to a more senior person.

I suppose ultimately, if you’re not comfortable with doing something, hopefully you shouldn’t be made to do it.  Because in the end, if you’ve done the action, it’s going to come back and bite you.


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