More and more I rely on other people’s recommendations – whether I know them or not. Restaurant reviews, movies, books…I will seek out what other’s have to say.
Speaking of which, have you ever really taken the time to read some of the reviews on the Amazon site, some people have WAY too much freakin’ time (and this is coming from someone who writes a blog for the fun of it). The level of analysis and detail that some people go into is crazy. Of course, some of it is all in fun..like the Wolf Sweatshirt reviews.
Even at work, I turn to others for candidate referrals, training recommendations, and even ideas about career development. True story: I basically started heading down the HR path because someone recommended it. Look at how well that turned out.
However, there is a danger in relying solely on reviews and recommendations out there on the interweb and even from those that you know – it leaves us vulnerable to copping out of making our own personal opinion, unbiased by the words of others. It also puts you at risk of avoiding due diligence.
Last week I woke up with a weird rash on my chest. My best guess is it was some type of allergic reaction, but since I didn’t have any other life threatening symptoms, beyond scratching myself insane, I went ahead with my day. Well, that is only after I took a commonly used off the shelf pill (*cough* Benadryl *cough*). I don’t suffer from allergies so I had never taken Benadryl before – my husband recommended it.
Me: “Will it make me drowsy?”
Husband: “No – of course not. I use it all the time.”
That was our brief conversation before I headed out the door and washed the pill down with coffee.
Two hours later I was sitting at, no it was more like slumped over my desk barely able to keep my eyes open. I tried to focus and do something productive…like send an email to the wrong recipient…and even filing was a challenge since apparently the alphabet is a non-negotiable sequence.
Finally the stuff wore off and I refused to take another, despite the fact that I probably looked like I was suffering from fleas. When I got home, I checked the bottle of medication and lo and behold…it may cause (freakin’) drowsiness. You don’t say.
Now, the obvious take-away is that you should always read the directions on medicine.
A second obvious take-away is don’t trust your husband when his answer is “No – of course not.”
However, aside from those obvious conclusions, I think the biggest reminder is that in relying solely on someone else’s word and recommendation you may put yourself in a situation that not only makes you uncomfortable, but you may also have a hard time rationalizing.
It could also leave others scratching their heads about my ability to make decisions.
Don’t worry, I’ll warn them about the possible side effects of the medicine that I’ll recommend for that…
* Too Much Information