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Showing posts from March, 2011

A Tipping Point in Our Patterns of Thought

Most of us have heard variations on Einstein's quote but I bet few have seen what he actually said/wrote and that is this: "Without changing our current patterns of thought we will not be able to solve the problems created with our current patterns of thought." As Russell Ackoff points out in a May, 2004 address, "Everyone I talk to agrees with this statement although almost nobody understands what it means." So what does it mean? Most educated people feel like they can solve problems and they would largely be correct. As Jamshid Gharajedaghi once told me, "Americans are the greatest problem solvers the world has ever seen - they can solve anything they are tasked with. The problem is this: the are among the worst at formulating the right set of problems!" As I've thought about this and observed people's behaviors over the past 7 or 8 years I believe both Jamshid and Russ are correct - most people don't really know what Einstein means and