However, for those of us with a more ordinary grasp of mathematics, a guest post by Curtis Faith caught my attention--and it's readable by all.
Faith lists his "seven rules for risk and uncertainty" which are taken from his book "Inside the mind of Turtles", a treatise on financial trading risk.
By Faith's reckoning, the seven rules are these:
- Overcome fear,
- Remain flexible,
- Take reasoned risks,
- Prepare to be wrong,
- Actively seek reality,
- Respond quickly to change, and
- Focus on decisions, not outcomes.
The one that gave me a double take, especially from the view of project management, is the last: "Focus on decisions, not outcomes". Frankly, I'm an 'outcomes' guy.
However, a close reading of Faith's point is that when facing decisions about risky outcomes, especially those that may have calamitous outcomes, the rule really is :
Don't be paralyzed in the decision process by the impact of the decision's likely outcome; make a decision based on an integration of best practice, experience fit to the circumstances, and the impact of not deciding.
The other rule that seems a little unusual as stated is "Actively seek reality". Here again, one has to read between the lines. An alternate construction: "Constantly monitor the situation to ensure relevance and applicability of risk assessments and responses."
Perhaps I'll conclude with Rule 8: When reading rules 1 - 7, translate them into a relevant project context.
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