Rule #34

“Less effective middle managers tend to say, “If I haven’t explicitly been told ‘yes,’ I can’t do it.” The best ones tend to say, “If I haven’t explicitly been told ‘no,’ I can do it.”  _Oren Harari, The Powell Principles


Rule #34 is one of the most important rules on my personal list of Rules for Life and Living. It states: In most cases, it is better to get forgiveness than permission.

Rule #34 is not about me and getting my way.

It must never be used as a licence to do what I want to do, no matter who it hurts or whatever the consequences.

But I learned a long time ago that lawyers and insurance adjusters are hired to advise not guide.

Well-meaning advisers who weigh the risks and count the costs must not get the final say.

It is the mission that must guide you and the risks and costs are the necessary price that must be paid.

And heaven forbid that you have no mission so consuming and important that you do not need Rule #34.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s