Acting intuitively or planning with a 360 view of upward and downward tactical and strategic risks

Acting intuitively or planning with a 360 view of upward and downward tactical and strategic risks

Jan 3rd, 2018

The ever present conflict between Acting intuitively or planning with a 360 view of upward and downward tactical and strategic risks. We know it exists, we can see it, we know when others fall for ill guided intuition. Yet we often do it.

Acting intuitively or planning with a 360 view of upward and downward tactical and strategic risks

There is a growing bias towards action in our society. We glorify action, when successful. Blunders, if they happen to others, quickly forgotten.

Action often reigns in projects, startups. Excitement of the “new” works as a dope and thinking is pushed to “later times”, when we will have time.

Acting intuitively or planning with a 360 view of upward and downward tactical and strategic risks

Among our clients we see scores of CxOs (C-suite) “with no time”. They have multiple tasks to carry out, hundreds of emails to answer, meetings, conference calls… and often no time to think. Technology has allowed this trend to root in corporate life. Gone are the times when a letter had to be thought-out and then dictated to a secretary, allowing time for thinking. Emails are supposed to be answered “immediately”. This create in many instances a false sens of ubiquitous urgency, of imminent crisis.

That ubiquitous urgency, imminent crisis makes us switch from rational thinking to limbic brain reactions. The limbic brain is the one that activates when we are under stress. It works on emotions rather than rational thoughts.

The limbic brain works with “Fight or Flight Response”. It makes us react with aggressiveness, stay immobile, or flight at lightning speed when we feel threatened by events. However, the limbic-brain is not a perfect defense mechanism in today’s world. When you scare a fawn with your headlights, it stops moving, paralyzed in stupor. That may work if a predator is around, but does not work that well with incoming traffic. Stupor is incidentally the etymological root of stupid, meaning an individual that does not react to stimuli, remains “immobile”.

Limbic brain driven reactions are often inappropriate

Certainly you know of cases where individuals or corporations have behaved in stupor, failing to take appropriate actions that were greatly needed. Their inaction was “limbic-brain” driven as they were not prepared.

Prepared individuals and corporations have a clear understanding of their risk landscape and thus reduce the “limbic-brain” activations to a minimum.

Closing considerations

Thinking is what we need to find new solutions.

Thinking requires time.

If we know and understand our risk landscape we gain time to think, even if the risk landscape is not perfect and uncertainties remain.

Riskope wishes you all the Best for this New Year and looks forward to supporting your limbic brain reactions reduction program.

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Category: Mitigations, Risk management

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