“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” – Albert Einstein

Positive Quote: “It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer.” – Albert Einstein


I can relate to this quote. This quote makes me think of the word ‘tenacity’, which has been used to describe me more times than I can count. It took me a few years to start taking this as a compliment. I have also learned when to temper my tenacity based on the topic and outcome.

A perfect example would be from a company I used to work at. We had metrics that the help desk analysts were expected to meet. I managed a team that included about 40 people who reported up to me at the time. Each week I would meet with the team leaders and review metrics and other operational items. We tended to look at the extremes and not spend time on the averages. Normally, this works and covers the areas that need focus and attention. Yet, something was niggling in the back of my brain around a certain employee. They were meeting their goals, yet there was not much variation week to week, which is odd, as everyone has a great or bad week. We did a deep dive and nothing jumped out at us. We dug a little deeper and found the cause. The person was self-monitoring and when they ‘hit’ their numbers they would ‘bump’ calls and not take anymore. This made it more difficult to track and once we did, we were able to locate other metrics that, if viewed, could catch this type of work avoidance in the future. If we did not stick with it, this person would have continued to do this. A few months later, this person moved on to another position outside of the company.


As a rule of sorts, I do my best to look past the surface and ask myself if what is seen is what is real versus a perception or anomaly. I am a proponent of the Five Whys. Asking five whys as to what is happening to get to the root cause of the issue or concern. It is a great tool to use. It also helps in reducing the amount of band-aids used to address the symptom versus the cause. In fact, there can be more than one root cause.


If you are interested in learning more about the Five Whys, here is a link to the Wikipedia article.


What do you think of this quote?


Have a great day,




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