Last week, I started writing Infinio’s content plan. I assessed what content we had, put it into buckets, and started looking for the gaps that would define what whitepapers, videos, demos, infographics, and other assets we create before the end of the year.
I forgot that when I was at Dell, each quarter I’d write up a plan for the content my team was going to deliver. It drove me crazy – I was full of self-doubt that I had good ideas, that the team could execute them, that we were doing too much / too little, that we were aligning with the right major initiatives. My manager would spend a little time with me on it, make some suggestions, tell me it was great, then it would be done.
I forgot that I go crazy before vacations. Before we had babyDiva, mrDiva and I used to go on all sorts of adventures – to the Azores, Iceland, Belize, Eastern Europe, Southern France. I would spend months poring over TripAdvisor and the guidebooks and booking.com to schedule exactly the right itinerary.
Don’t get me wrong – I love *having* a plan. I love executing against a plan. And I love the success that comes with executing against a good plan.
I use a grocery list. I book plane tickets months in advance. I love maps, and public transportation. I make all of babyDiva’s lunches for the week on Sunday. I am what you would call “a planner.” But I hate some of it.
I think it has to do with a part of me that’s best understood through the lens of Myers-Briggs. The final letter in Myers-Briggs relates to Structure.
Structure: In dealing with the outside world, do you prefer to get things decided or do you prefer to stay open to new information and options? This is called Judging (J) or Perceiving (P).
I think I’ll write more about my Myers-Briggs type next week, but for now suffice it to say, I am an incredibly strong “J”. I have very little tolerance for open-endedness. I like things to be settled, to already have a plan, to have decided, rather than to have things in a state where I still have to decide.
I think that’s why I like having a plan…but hate making one. The process of making one is all about uncertainty, while the process of having one is all about having decided.