The best do-gooder advice I ever received

The best piece of advice I ever received was from a professor in grad school who told us that we as aid workers might never be able to unequivocally determine if we are doing things right. However she assured us that if we weren’t questioning ourselves, we most certainly were doing things wrong.

Along with the results frameworks and donor pressures that dictate our daily work, our own personal reflection is also a necessary and vital tool in making our role as humanitarians more effective.

Among your daily have-to-get-things-done focus, do you ask enough questions? Or do you settle for what you know?


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  1. Good advice! Yet, there is a balance between asking questions and being stunned by the sheer number of questions I sometimes ask of myself. Going with what I know and acknowledging that I don’t know everything allows me to bet on growth in the future too.

  2. Works in science labs too. In fact no science labs works without it.
    “The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.” — Richard Feynman (Nobel prize winning physicist and champion safe cracker of every safe in Los Alamos. True Story.)

  3. Pingback: Fighting Poverty is Easy but not Simple - 3 Easy Steps | Justice and Life

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