Monday, November 28, 2011

Only 3 different kinds of problems?

One of the books that I am currently reading is "The Checklist Manifesto" by Atul Gawande. It is non-fiction (the only kind of book i read), and pretty much tries to convince the reader that everything can be broken down into a checklist, and this will make tasks more efficient, safe, etc. etc.
I won't bore you with the details; I am actually not far enough into the book to give it a fair review. I do, however, want to share a few ideas with you that are presented early in the book.
Gawande proposes that there are really only 3 different kinds of problems which we face: simple, complicated, and complex.
  • Simple problems are those akin to baking a cake from a mix. Simple and few steps, pretty much guaranteed success if you follow the recipe.
  • Complicated problems can be likened to launching a rocket to the moon. It can be broken down into several simple problems, and once success is achieved, you can pretty much follow the same steps with other rockets and expect success.
  • Complex problems are ones like raising a child: "Although raising one child may provide experience, it does not guarantee success with the next child". Outcomes remain highly uncertain.

Think about the problems that you face in your life. Can they be grouped into these categories? Can the more difficult ones be broken down into smaller problems?
If your problems are like mine, most of them can be hacked into smaller pieces. I will be looking to find which ones have the highest possibilites of success, and do at least ONE THING every day to move toward resolution.
I invite you to do the same.

1 comment:

  1. This is very attention-grabbing, You're an overly professional blogger. I've joined
    your feed and sit up for in the hunt for extra of your magnificent post.
    Additionally, I have shared your web site in my
    social networks

    Here is my web-site ... merchant cash advance forum