In addition to the blood pressure pills I take from stressing out over changing the business model for professional firms (kidding, it is hereditary), I take a few vitamins and supplements on a daily basis. Since I like to take them on a full stomach, after dinner seems to work best for me. However, because I am usually doing several things at once I sometimes forget if I have taken the pills or not.
After debating about it for a few weeks, I finally broke down and bought one of those weekly pill organizers. (Shown at left.) OK, before you start with the comments, there were not many choices.
In any case (pun intended), I loaded it up on Sunday and thus far it is working flawlessly. Coincidently, it has also led to an unintended benefit – I only have to unscrew the child protection lids once a week now, and not once a day.
I got to thinking about it and there is a lesson here for professional firms. Notice that the original problem was one of effectiveness – I could not remember if I had taken the pills. In solving the effectiveness problem I also increase my efficiency – I only open the bottles once a week now. It was through increasing my effectiveness that I also increased my efficiency. I submit that this could not have worked the other way. No amount of increasing my efficiency of the original task would have increased my effectiveness.
If I have lined up the bottles and practiced open them with the least amount of effort and streamlined precision of motion, I would have not increased my ability to remember to take the pills each night.
The lesson – I am living proof of Kless’ Second Law – Effectiveness always and everywhere trumps efficiency.