Independent Thinking Blog

Are You Plugging Holes or Seeking Solutions?

The fire alarm in my building had a glitch last night. By glitch, I mean it was going off every 45 seconds or so. (And yes, the fire department came out the first time.) The management solution was to have someone man the switch and try to turn the alarm off as quickly as possible after it sounded–until someone from the alarm company could get there to assess the problem.

This is a plugging holes approach. Alarm sounding for no reason; okay, we keep switching it off.

Why not try to figure out why the alarm might suddenly be going off incessantly?

There was a crew working late last night installing new molding on the top floor. Molding + Ceiling = Working Close to Fire Alarm Wiring. I called down to suggest that perhaps something the work crew was doing had triggered the problem. A couple minutes later the alarm stopped glitching.

Now I don’t know whether my solution was the solution, but it was certainly better than just plugging holes.

Are you plugging holes or seeking solutions?

Photo by wobble-san (Flickr).

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