Here is a quick lesson from my 11 year old son, Gavin. You see, Gavin enjoys tinkering around the garage. The challenge for me is he uses tools and doesn’t put them away – big surprise for anyone with an 11 year old?! I recently purchased a new tool chest – the kind that locks! I told Gavin that since he helped lose pieces and some were not put away correctly, that he earned the opportunity to help organize my new tool chest.
It came time to organize the sockets. There were at least 2 dozen that were not where they belong and my instructions were to organize them first by standard and metric. I showed him that standard have measurements of 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, and so on and that metric have a number and “mm” next to it. Easy instructions, not too many sockets to organize, and he was doing it with a smile.
Then he says, “Dad, your way works, and I don’t mean to be rude, but I have a faster way.” First, I was glad he was trying not to be rude. Second, I was surprised that he had an easier way. Was it to just throw them out?! So, he showed me. And here is the 2-part lesson. Apparently, at least on a Craftsman socket set, the standard sockets have, along with the brand name, the measurement only, while the metric sockets have 1/8 inch tick marks all the way around the bottom of the socket. Who knew!? So instead of looking for the “mm” he was looking for the tick marks. I have been doing it the difficult way all these years!
The second lesson of my 2-part lesson is you never know who you will learn from. That day, I learned that even a self-proclaimed efficient and effective guy like me can learn something from an 11 year old. Don’t ignore the person who you believe to be too young, too old, uneducated, wrong job, wrong business, or any other “wrong” or “too” [insert assumption here], as you never know who or where you will learn from.
Jared W. Snow