Category Archives: Cognitive Strategy

Can you see the whole picture?

Most times when looking for a response to a long term problem we approach it with the same frame of view. Its almost as if we perpetuate the problem we are trying to solve because of some type of limitation in our ability to see things from another perspective.

Well, there are frameworks and models to assist us in our thinking.

One such model is based on Ken Wilber’s “Integral Theory”. Where integral implies seeing the whole picture.

In essence Wilber argues that there are four perspectives to any phenomena:

  1. the systems we share (ie, the exterior collective, social)
  2. the beliefs we share (ie. the interior collective, cultural)
  3. the systems that are me (ie, the exterior individual, behaviours)
  4. the beliefs that are me (ie, the interior individual, intentions)

So, how does this apply in practice?

For example, a team seems to continually come up short with respect to its customer service KPI’s. All previous attempts at improving have been focused on training. Well, how about seeing if other actions would work?

How about reflecting upon the intentions of those in the group. How might those be aligned with what you are trying to achieve? What about considering the systems that the people are working with. Are the IT systems that the team are using fit for the job? And what about the culture of the group? What words and metaphors can you use to describe it?

So, by looking at the problem from a different vantage point the keys to unlocking that issue can be found.

For more, visit Dellium Advisory, follow on Twitter, connect using LinkedIn, or review my IT-centric blog.

Do you think, or do you just do?

Planning, business planning, strategic planning. Whatever term you put on it, it requires thought.

And thinking implies effort.

Most times, its just easier to do. Its just easier to repeat how you have been successful in the past. Assuming that the future will be no different.

But unlike that financial planning adage “past performance is no guarantee of future performance” we assume that how we have operated in the past will hold us in good stead into the times ahead.

But will it?

Think of what the internet has done to retail.

What about low-cost imports from China?

And, what about the changes in people’s spending behavior?

Will there be changes that affect you? Reflect on this anecdote: as much as we have learnt & discovered over the last 75 years, we will repeat over the next 25.

Consider the following and the impacts that they have had:

  • cordless tools
  • GPS
  • internet
  • just-in-time manufacturing
  • low-cost air travel
  • Microwave oven
  • MP3 player
  • MRI
  • to name but a few ….

So, what are the inventions, innovations, new things and processes that will impact upon your business? Upon how your organization operates and succeeds?

For more, visit Dellium Advisory, follow on Twitter, connect using LinkedIn, or review my IT-centric blog.

Strategic Planning is Essential for Better Performance

Over the decades of the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s there were a mixed bag of academic studies regarding the usefulness of strategic planning. Some studies poured cold water on the notion that strategic planning could improve the performance of a firm, others were hearty in their endorsement.

But time and again in recent years, analysis has shown that indeed bringing direction to an organisation through the process of strategic planning has indeed brought benefits.

Aspects improved include:

  • sales
  • profit
  • productivity
  • returns on investments
  • employee engagement
  • even the success ratio of new product development

The long-term implication from each of these studies is that if an organisation (whether for-profit or not-for-profit) thinks about its future and puts some resources into planning its direction (where it is, where it wants to go, and how it will get there) it will not only survive but thrive.

For more, visit Dellium Advisory, follow on Twitter, connect using LinkedIn, or review my IT-centric blog.