Re: Perception training exercises LO2868
Mon, 18 Sep 1995 20:25:21 -0400 (EDT)

Replying to LO2850 --


You note that your workshop focuses on avoiding judgments and the pursuit
of "right and wrong." To that end I would offer up a very valuable
observation I learned from a former AT&T executive who was not American
by birth. He noted that american management
often rushes, when faced
with a choice, to assume that in an "a" "b" choice, one MUST
between the two. More often than not the most beneficial choice is to
find a way to choose BOTH "a" and "b". Such a middle ground avoids the
fruitless pursuit of "what is right" and "what is wrong."

I have tried this mental frame on numerous occasions. Regardless of how I
frame the choice, the basic assumption is that one MUST choose between an
"a" and "b" alternative. I have yet to see either an individual or group
voluntarily explore the option of going with an "a + b" option. Most
managers feel that they prove their insight or intellectual horsepower by
the ever so clever route they pursued in reaching the conclusion to select
"a" vs "b." In most of these instances a better choice would have been
the "A+B" option. Unfortunately most decision makers assume that this
most profitable middle ground is not a legitimate choice.

If you can see the value in this oft neglected option, you might have some
fun with your students in demonstrating how we rush to judgement when
there is no need to judge, or that we waste valuable resources in the
pursuit of " right vs wrong" when the most viable alternative is to opt
for a middle ground into which all participants can buy in.

I hope this helps you with your group exercise !


Bruce (