“We constantly look to what others are doing. We attend conferences, read books, talk to friends and colleagues to get their input and advice, and sometimes we are also the dispensers of advice. We are in pursuit of understanding the best practices of others to help guide us. But it is a flawed assumption that what works for one organization will work for another. Even “if the industries, sizes and market conditions are the same, the notion that “if it’s good for them, it’s good for us” is simply not true.
I know of a company with an amazing culture. When asked, the employees say they love that all the conference rooms have ping-pong tables in them. Does that mean that if you were to put ping-pong tables in all your conference rooms your culture would improve? Of course not. But this is an example of “best practices.” The idea that copying WHAT or HOW things are done at “high-performing organizations will inherently work for you is just not true. Like the Ferrari and the Honda, what is good for one company is not necessarily good for another. Put simply, best practices are not always best.
It is not just WHAT or HOW you do things that matters; what matters more is that WHAT and HOW you do things is consistent with your WHY. Only then will your practices indeed be best. There is nothing inherently wrong with looking to others to learn what they do, the challenge is knowing what practices or advice to follow ”
“Start with why” Simon Sinek