Should you wander off the beaten path?

If it is usually done to follow a certain path, is there any point to innovate? Why would you try to fix something that’s working? Should you pave a new road if the old one serves the purpose of getting you from point A to point B? 

On one hand, wouldn’t it be better to focus on problems which don’t have any solution yet rather than try to find a better solution where there is one already? This approach could be right. On the other hand, what if you do find a more efficient solution, a shorter path or an easier way, could it be that some unsolved problems will then solve themselves?


In applied terms I was (and I am) facing this philosophical dilemma rather frequently. A small example. It is done to first graduate law faculty and then start your first legal job. But law ain’t medicine! So despite the fact that I was back then one of the very few, I opted to start working after the first course (switching to part time at the University). I am convinced it was the best way, although not the common one. There were more examples in my professional and personal life when I went off the beaten path and never regretted that choice.

Now looking at our kids,

I cannot help but wonder if we should make sure they are well-paced on the traditional route or better wander off and create their own.

Like: wouldn’t they learn more if we go on the long trip around the world with occasional varied schooling, instead of trapping them in the traditional schooling system?

Wouldn’t they be better prepared for the future and become true leaders if they are regularly forced to disrupt, question and search for the ways to “fix even what’s working”? 

But then again, if I look at the top level executives or politicians in Europe, it’s all about the right school, the right University, the right… Traditions and religiously following them. The question is: will it remain the same within this and 20 years?… And another good question is: could the two approaches be successfully merged?


I am very interested to hear your thoughts! Please share

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s