Managing complexity.

JSF F-35 Lightening

JSF F-35 Lightening

I am not a car nut, but as a young bloke, I used to fix my own cars. There was  not much you could not do without a reasonable set of Sidchromes, a block and tackle, mechanical manual, and a jack.

No longer.

My kids would no more set out to fix their own cars as fly, it is simply too complex. On the other hand, they have mastered the art of managing complexity by just knowing how to use stuff, and call for expert help when things go wrong.

Life is becoming incredibly complex, almost everything we do has dimensions that we cannot hope to understand and interact with, so we outsource.  We ask the experts, take advice, seek guidance from those with the domain expertise we do  not have. This is a healthy process, except when having asked the experts, we disregard their advice because it is inconsistent with some pre determined position, or expressed opinion.

Ego getting in the way.

We see it all the time in politics, expert advice disregarded by those who sought it to inform their decision making.

Last week Liberal backbencher Dennis Jensen, with a Phd in materials science, and a background in applied research, and so with  some credibility on matters scientific  had the balls to criticise Government. In a very worthwhile speech made to an almost empty Parliament he reflected on the   apparent lack of uderstanding of how science works  and the management of R&D priorities using the JSF project as a case in point as he had intimate knowledge of the decision making processes applied.

Economies are complex, and the competing demands  on a finite pool of funds challenging to manage, but is that not why we employ experts? Why then disregard their advice in such a wholesale fashion as appeared to happen here?

Better stop thinking and get back to where the real action is, whichever crappy reality show is currently topping the ratings.

About strategyaudit

StrategyAudit is a boutique strategy and marketing consultancy concentrating on the challenges of the medium sized manufacturing businesses that make up the backbone of our economy. The particular focus is on their strategic and marketing development. as well as the business and operational efficiency improvements necessary for day to day commercial survival. We not only give advice, we go down "into the weeds" to ensure and enable implementation.
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