The saying goes, “Too many cooks ruin the soup.” It applies to me in several ways, and I try to be cognizant of it.

When I teach martial arts class, there can be several instructors on the floor at once, each taking care of a different group of students. If I am not the lead instructor, I take care to understand what they are trying to focus on for that particular class. You see, although a student may be doing several things wrong, the head instructor will usually have a strategy in teaching certain techniques. He may be having the student trying to perfect one aspect of the move at the expense of other facets. This is such that the student will not be overwhelmed and confused by too many instructions at once.

If the head instructor is having the students focus on stance, then the assistant instructors should help correct stances and refrain from critiquing the punch and other aspects. This applies mostly to beginner students who have a hard time focusing on several areas at once due to lack of body awareness.

The same can also be said about IT projects. Middle managers and “auxiliary” stakeholders need to be aware of the vision. When too many stakeholders feel like they need to chime in and get their 2 cents in, the vision of the project gets muddled. Often times, the end product is not even a pale shadow of the vision of its creator.

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