Asking the Right Questions

This is a second post where I summarize the key elements of my strategic thinking model.

We started by taking a quick look at the difference between strategic and non-strategic thinking. And we noted that even if you wants to be strategically minded, you can get stuck if you perceive the risks of failure as too high.

But perceived risks are not necessarily real risks. The problem is that as a species, humans are just not very good at future thinking. We evolved more as a present thinking creature. It is only in modern times where we have become future oriented (seen in our obsession with “progress”).

With our inherent limitations, to be successful in a world that is future oriented, we need to master certain intellectual tools that enable us to better predict the outcomes of the games we play. These tools enable us to better use our mental resources to see more clearly things in time..And using them boils down to learning to ask the right questions.

What we need to know in any given situation is what is the value of the experience in light of where we need to go in the future. In other words, learning how to interpret experiences rather than just take them in. Strategy emerges from these interpretations. It supports the story that we weave around who we want to be in light of what is going on around us.

In this context, the main risk is not having a vision at all — clinging to the present as if the present will last forever. Once we let go of that, we can more clearly see the barriers to moving on and the risks that we cannot surmount these barriers.  So can strategy help us overcome these barriers? Of course! Stay tuned!

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