Friday, October 4, 2013

React and respond -- we all do it!

It's human nature to 'react'; that's our survival instincts at work. So, our baseline is reactive, not proactive, a mechanism we have that Daniel Kahneman has called "System 1"... nearly automatic, and often quite fast: the so-called 'knee jerk' reaction.

The thing we can control better than reaction is response: and the hardest thing to respond to is losing or getting lost. Again, Kahneman is a guide: this phenomenon is best explained by 'prospect theory' -- in a few words, we hate (hate, hate!) backsliding from a position we achieved, earned, or bought into, and when we are lost who ever stops for directions? (Certainly, not men!)

But, accepting guidance/direction/input/advice -- even if given as 'tough love' -- is often what it takes to get back on track, even though we hate (hate, hate!) hearing from someone what we may already know but are unwilling to admit.

Then, the biggie is recovery of self-esteem if that has been challenged; reaffirming dominance; and recovering a leadership position.  These are no small matters in the business of human relations, and they take up a lot of project energy -- anti-lean, to be sure!

From a planning perspective, in order not to be fragile (See: Nassim Taleb), we need redundancy and margin to absorb these shocks, for shocks there will be.... Amen!

Check out these books I've written in the library at Square Peg Consulting