Currently viewing the tag: "Problem-solving"

Raise the anchor for sharing, collaborative problem-solving and decision-making

Ask questions, share ideas, draw up, argue and seek consensus towards a new knowledge are essential activities in understanding the messages that are sent to us.

Ask questions and a mainly do good question is not an easy task. But answering good questions, which we believe are usually difficult, without being influenced by a series of judgments based on partially trusted information or even insignificant, nor is it!

When the question is difficult and the answer does not arise immediately we tend to give an answer based on an easier hypothetical question but related to the difficult one.

“When confronted with a problem — choosing a chess move or deciding whether to invest in stock — the machinery of intuitive thought does the best it can. If the individual has relevant expertise, she will recognize the solution, and the intuitive solution that comes to her mind is likely to be correct.”- Kahneman.

When we seek solutions to a problem should be natural to share ideas, be open to ideas different from ours and find the relevant common points that serve as a starting point for a possible consensus.

However this naturalness is often overshadowed by something that we have in us and which serves as reference for our comparisons, i.e. an anchor that we hold to our previous experience and prevents us from understanding of other viewpoints.

Even when we are trying to consciously avoid this influence of anchoring we normally load the values imbued in the anchor.

These systematic errors, are not under the effects of our emotional state, they are built and evolved into us cognitively.

If on the one hand, this chain that links us to our experience is a limit when we try to establish a process of sharing and collaboration, on the other hand, the fear that our opinion is not shared by others or that does not meet their needs can lead to a conflicting situation.

When we participate in a discussion in a group, there is an almost primary social desire approval that nourishes our hope to make a wise idea to a problem, but our anchors can strangle our arguments and prevent the satisfaction of our needs of belonging.

Human thought naturally focuses around existing knowledge and the best way to generate new ideas is to add something new.

So that our ideas are shared by the other elements of the group or organization we have to find the common points of interest to the group and to ourselves.

Often when we add a significant stimulus we provoke a process of generating ideas and offer the opportunity to look at issues differently, causing our idea to be shared, discussed and eventually considered valid and relevant, without necessarily being resulting from our anchors.

The problem is that many times we get help from mental shortcuts to simplify problems and to give us a quick help in its resolution but this is not the fear that the idea is not shared.

When we use these shortcuts based on an anchor and we want to expose our idea by adjusting it successively to that starting point, we run the risk of being unable to exhibit in its entirety and with the meaning we want.

People start with an implicitly suggested reference point and make incremental adjustments based on additional information to arrive at the desired point.

We don’t stop our fear that the idea is not shared by others, only creating the environment of “understanding” and checking the possibility, it also passes through find a power source that would allow us to develop this idea.

According to Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky we have two different mental operations:

“System 1 (fast thinking) is the mental state in which you probably drive a car or buy groceries. It relies heavily on intuition and is amazingly capable of misleading and also of being misled. The slow-thinking

System 2 is the mental state that understands how System 1 might be misled and steps in to try to prevent it from happening. The most important quality of System 2 is that it is lazy; the most important quality of System 1 is that it can’t be turned off.

Even being lazy our slow thinking can help us to share and collaborate. Think of it!

Happy holidays!

When planning the year 2012 don’t forget that we have the tendency to super estimate benefits and underestimate the costs!


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