Saturday, August 09, 2008

Choices, choice, choices

That too much choice can be a curse is a well known fact.

I learned this lesson long ago when I traveled to Chicago and there, on the first day, came down for breakfast to a corner breakfast place.

I ordered tea.

Now back home, such an order would instantly bring me a piping hot cup of tea with milk and sugar more or less to my taste. Talk about instant gratification.

But here I was confronted by a menu containing about 20 types of tea. As my caffeine-starved brain reeled from the pressure of this early morning exertion, I eventually managed to settle on English-Breakfast tea. But as I sipped my cup of not-very-good tea, I reflected on the the catch-22 here. If I'm so brain-dead that I need a good strong cup of tea to get started, how am I supposed to wield that dying brain power to decide among 20 types of tea ?

It happens all the time. There is this old rag about a guy who quit his job as a tomato-sorter. When asked why he quit, he managed to reply "too many choices"! Just think about it: a conveyor belt brings a never-ending line of tomatoes towards you, and for each one you have to decide - is it premium or regular or rotten ? Oh the agony !

And that's what goes on in offices too. We so-called white-collared (though I rarely wear white) workers don't do an iota of real work. Instead, we're paid to make choices and to decide. And the decisions keep coming. Should this project be shelved ? should we put more money behind that ? should be build or outsource ? should we take a coffee break ? Aaaargghhh, its enough to make you wish you were a tomato-sorter - he, at least, has to deal with tomatoes only!

1 comment:

  1. Hmmm. Is this an interesting note? Should I comment or not? Am I rambling or not?
    Hehehe good one. Choices just make it more complicated. Liked the good old days when things were simple and in black and white!