People are constantly “hacking” their work, grabbing unofficial solutions from other parts of their lives in order to solve their problems, increase their capabilities and lessen their work. When they do this, they inject some much-needed flexibility into the system—they find ways to route around the limitations and improve the capabilities of what could otherwise be an inflexible, one-size-fits-all system. That sticky note or list is sometimes the hidden linchpin of their work—the thing that allows them to productively use the database, coordinate with coworkers or track their tasks.
That’s the good news. But the bad news is that these ad hoc solutions can block information flow, precisely because they are so customized.
Beyond that bad news, there's good news too. You can achieve topsight into the organization, figuring out how to identify ad hoc solutions—and understand what they're trying to solve. If you're trying to figure out how to apply topsight, or how to explain it to others in your organization, take a look.