"Not Invented Here"

In his recent post about rebooting his rather involved email workflow, Michael Lopp also touched on his being afflicted with the disease of "Not Invented Here":

This disease forces me to ignore the helpful advice of others. It requires me to often build my own tool when there are plenty of pre-existing tools already built. You may think this disease is inefficient, but I find it educational.

As someone also tormented by this condition, I find the exercise of creating my own tool or system will always result in one of two equally valuable outcomes: (1) I build a tool that uniquely fits my individual way of thinking, and therefore works great for me, or (2) through the process of first trying to create my own way of doing something, I’m then able to accept someone else's invention because my experience as the inventor has offered the needed insight into why it works.

I've found that both paths lead to a positive net result. Lopp concludes with this thoughtful consideration:

As a nerd afflicted with “Not Invented Here” I like to architect and build systems from the ground up because I tell myself that I like to learn, but I’m often simply stubborn. Uh, I could build that. This stubbornness unfortunately often makes me beholden to the things I build because, well, I built them. As a leader, I need to be willing to throw away cherished things that aren’t capable of evolving with me and I need to listen to the helpful advice others so I can better focus on getting shit done.