·       Thesis:  “People court failure in predictable ways…Having identified and understood these tendencies in ourselves, we will be much better problem solvers.  We will be more able to start wisely, to make corrections in midcourse, and, most important, to learn from failures we did not avert.” – 10

·       Supporting Information

o   Many problems are complex – planning & problem-solving can go awry if we don’t pay attention to possible side-effects and long-term repercussions – 2, 52

o   Mistakes add up – 7

o   We tend to try to understand the problem and then push forward once we think we do – it’s hard to re-reflect later and ensure you still understand it like you thought you did – 16

o   Common problems - 18

§  Act w/out prior analysis of situation

§  Failed to anticipate side effects & long term repercussions

§  Assume absence of immediate negative effects mean correct measures taken

§  Let overinvolvement in “projects” blind to emerging needs & changes in situation

§  Prone to cynical reactions

o   Must set good goals (See: Rumelt’s kernel) – 52

o   Need to organize list of problems by:

§  Determine interdependencies – 55

§  Prioritize in order of importance & urgency – 56

§  Delegation – 56

o   “The mistake is less not knowing than not wanting to know.  And not wanting to know is a result not of ill will or egoism but of thinking that focuses on an immediately acute problem.” – 58

o   Goals are often contradictory – 65

o   One problem w/ info: The more we know the more we realize we don’t know…one reason decision-makers might be often separated from information-gatherers – avoid paralysis by analysis – 99

o   Mistakes often happen b/c of a tendency to economize, which prompts us to omit certain steps in thought process or to simplify them as much as possible – 187

·       PAGE 197

o   State goals early and understand they might contradict or cannot all be achieved

o   Establish priorties but don’t cling forever

o   Form a model of the system

o   Find sweet spot in info gathering for specific situation – not too much or too little

o   Don’t abstract too much, but also don’t hastily ascribe all events to a single cause

o   Analyze errors & draw conclusions to reorganize thinking & behavior

Develop good common sense informed by temporal configurations (extend time horizon) and think in terms of complex sys

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