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Posts Tagged ‘Thinking’

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Uploaded by Kevin Steele

If you ever do strategy or planning sessions, here’s something you always run into.  If I ask something like, “on average, how long does it take new salespeople to get up to speed?”  Some people will think through their experience, maybe even look at some data and give it their best shot.

Others will answer, “it depends.”  They will come up with all sorts of variables that make it impossible to even take an educated guess.  In fact, they will refuse to take a wild guess. 

When this happens, I’m always reminded by the joke they told during the Clinton/Dole election.  Clinton had been asked by MTV about whether he wore boxers or briefs.  The joke was they asked Bob Dole if he wore boxes or brief…he replied…Depends.

Anyway, the depends answer is what I call in the box thinking.  In some way, people are either resistant to answering with their best guess or they are simply paralyzed by all the possible answers. 

I hear a lot in the education world about how every student is unique and different and every teacher is unique and different so you really can’t do anything that tries to reduce that variability or learn from best practices.  In many cases, this resistance is a resistance to change…so the status quo continues. 

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