pumpkin pie

Forty things I’ve learned in my first 40 years.  Learn more about the series here.

5 of 40…

It’s one of those moments that’s tattooed to my brain.  Years ago, one of the best mentors a young professional could ask for generously passed on some wisdom that he humbly credited up the chain to a prior mentor of his.

The mentor? Darwin Copeman.

The wisdom? “Mark, you have to understand that sometimes you’re going to be prematurely correct.  When you are, you need to give others some time.”

Prematurely correct?

This is not one of those terms that you find in a business book, leadership blog, or self-help manual.  If you Google it, you aren’t spoiled with thousands of results.  This one is indeed unique.

What else?

Some other points to think about related to this:

  • This advice further grays our decision-making.  Am I right?  Am I wrong?  Or am I just merely correct too early?
  • Planting and cultivating seeds is important when believing strongly in something.  The idea may be brilliant, but you likely need others to bring it to fruition.
  • Other people validate our correctness.  Not us.
  • The importance of patience can’t be understated.  Many times we need to allow others the time to grasp and understand our perspectives.  This most often starts with truly seeking to understand theirs.
  • This nugget of wisdom is at the heart of change management – act as a shepherd vs. a bulldozer.

Takeaway 5 of 40

I can’t say it any better than the way Darwin shared it…

Sometimes you’re prematurely correct.

Our untamed ego likes to forcefully push our correctness forward, and often this approach is less than effective.  Rather, it will likely stall any forward positive progress.  We need to give others the space and time to find their own conclusions and their own way to our correct thought or idea.

How do you know when you’re prematurely correct?  No easy button here.

And now, the final twist.  Sometimes we may think we’re prematurely correct, but as time goes by, we just may be incorrect.  In those cases, bring on a nice slice of humble pie.  Make mine pumpkin, please!

Have you ever been prematurely correct?  And what’s you favorite kind of pie?

Enjoy today,



I’m continuing to stay free of Facebook and Twitter — it’s not a judgment, just a way of me choosing how to use my time! Again, I have nothing against either social media platform and all of you who are actively engaged. Due to my lack of presence on these platforms, please feel free to share on my behalf. Thank you! 

2 thoughts on “5/40: Correct or Prematurely Correct?

  1. This is a good thing to remember when it comes to parenting, too! …and apple pie with vanilla ice cream 😊

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