Curious Cows

American cattle ranchers in the Southwest invented the cattle guard (or grid) to prevent cattle from migrating across fenced boundaries. A great time saving invention, they allowed somewhat lazy ranch hands in their trucks to carry on without having to stop to open and close gates.

However, the grates were expensive and particularly uncomfortable for passengers and cargo to cross. So one day some bright cowboys, working on the assumption that cattle aren't as bright, experimented by painting lines across the road to simulate a cattle guard.

It worked! The cows were fooled into believing that the painted stripes had the same effect as a grid of steel bars over a ditch and the cowboys and their cargo could race through in comfort.

For years, this happy state of affairs continued until one day, a cowboy found a herd of cattle in a lush field by a river in which it wasn't supposed to be! The fences were undamaged, and the only way the cattle could have crossed into that lush field was to have crossed the painted grid.

The cowboy thought hard and his only conclusion was that one cow had approached the grid, inspected it, tested it, and concluded that it was all a hoax; herd wisdom, which she had believed all her life, was wrong. It was perfectly safe to cross into a much more attractive field.

What did that cow require to cross into a more attractive field?  Courage yes, but most of all she required curiosity.   Curiosity to inspect and test the evidence before her. She needed to challenge herd wisdom.

At CHILDS we inspect and test ideas to challenge our own herd wisdom.  Doing things over and over again expecting different results is our idea of insanity! If we want different results we have to do things differently, and to do things differently we've got to start with curiosity.   And we believe that curiosity is the healthiest ingredient to promote learning, and by learning we can 'win' more often.  Winning of course requires definition or at least calibration according to circumstances (Alastair Campbell) and at CHILDS we define winning as 'identifying, gathering and mobilising our resources to go as far as we can!'

Come and join us.

This is a synopsis of a story told by Larry Wilson in 'Play to Win'.
Photo: By IdahoNampa at English Wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons.) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons