Context Matters

A few years ago, I almost had an accident on a highway. The car ahead of me came to a sudden stop and I, along with several other vehicles, had to brake hard to avoid collision.

Before I could react any further, I saw that an elderly couple had actually swerved in front of that car and the driver had to stop to avoid hitting them.

The other drivers, not having seen the couple, started to curse him for almost causing a huge accident.

One of the most common words used in Thoughtworks, is context. It is used in conjunction with the information that is needed for all of us to do our work.

But it can also be used to understand why people behave the way they do. Or at the very least understand that there is a reason.

So the next time you see someone (colleague, teammate, client, family member etc) behave irrationally or unproductively, try to find the context. Or at least realise there is one.

It'll help you grow and it'll make your relationships stronger.