Critical Thinking, Problem Solving & Decision MakingJul 30, 2022
For clarity and context - when I get asked about decision making -
I break down this whole topic into four related domains:
- Problem Finding
- Problem Solving & Critical Thinking
- Decision Making
- Creativity & Innovation
Problem Finding - I think we often skip this stage and start solving 'a problem' without really finding the REAL problem first.
Critical Thinking - Developing the skills to be critical in how we think and analyze
Modeling - How we 'see' or understand the problem and all it's layers
Red Team - Ensuring that we are aware of the biases we have as we come to a solution
Decision Making - What is our process, the OODA loop
Creativity & Innovation - I separate these areas to distinguish problems (therefore solutions) we know about and problems (therefore new solutions) we don't know about
For DECISION MAKING specifically there's 2 distinct topics
- How we decide
- How we can decide
- How we decide
How We Decide is best described by looking at biases and emotion
How We Decide Under Pressure is best described by John Boyds OODA loop
- How We CAN Decide
How we can decide is best broken down by Importance / Time Constraint
Low Importance Outcome - Always use a simple heuristic (rule of thumb), a negative consequence is minimal and you save time & energy regardless
High Importance & Short Time Constraint - Use a simple heuristic (rule of thumb). Overthinking leads to false beliefs and undermines intuition and instinct, so with limited time always go with intuition and instinct.
High Importance and No Time Constraint -
- Source the actual real problem.
- Model the complete Problem
- Actively Remove Biases and Assumptions
- Propose Solutions & Decision Tree (If, then, else)
- Think through 2nd and 3rd order outcomes
- Decide on Strategy
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