Flight of the Bumblebee

September 16, 2019 Phil Price

Here in the South, we have a bee that eats wood, destroying otherwise fine architecture, fences and outdoor furniture. It’s called the white-faced bee or white-faced bumble. Somehow, over time it has become known as the carpenter bee – a most disrespectful misnomer as no carpenter intentionally destroys something made of wood. Well, okay, I will admit I did once destroy a book cabinet I had made, but in my defense, it was built out of square, out of plumb, and out of level.

Each of us needs a niche, and we work hard to carve out that ideal position, whether it’s with a specialty hobby, an expert-level knowledge at work, or another unique identifier. It is human nature to want to contribute and improve processes wherever possible, however we need to be careful not to overreach. I once had to re-distribute a man who was hired as an electrician. He owned no tools and didn’t know an AC from a DC. Had I allowed him to work on the job site, his work would have likely turned out like my aforementioned book cabinet. Additionally, it would have been insulting to electricians to place him on an equal plane.

In any situation, even one where you’re considered an expert, it’s important to be conscious of your limits and never extend past them. Sometimes, in our haste to complete a job, we overestimate our abilities or those of others. Just because someone says they’ve got a situation under control doesn’t always mean we should take them at their word and move on. Labels are nice when appropriately applied to those with specific skill sets, but the veneer of a title becomes transparent in short order when the skills fail to match the claim.

Regardless of the task at hand, always put safety first and be diligent in recognizing the limitations of yourself and those around you.

To learn more about our safety culture here at Franklin Energy, schedule a meeting with an expert today.


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