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Great or Disastrous?

Just like a computer software program, checklists can be useful, but if there is a flaw in the system, they can be a disaster.

In his book, “The Checklist Manifesto,” author Atul Gawande recounts how the use of checklists really “took off.”

It started in 1935 when Boeing designed a plane that was far better than any of its competitors. The problem was that the plane, eventually named the B-17, was much too complex for even the most experienced pilots. In one of its initial tests, the plane crashed, killing 2 crew members, including the pilot.

What was the antidote to this complexity that overwhelmed the best pilots? A checklist so they would not overlook any crucial item–a concept that is still used today. …


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…That We Should Learn Before It’s Too Late

One of the best ways to do better in the future is to learn from past mistakes–preferably someone else’s mistake. When you make a mistake and then make the same mistake again, it’s pretty clear that you didn’t learn from your prior error.

Like the old adage: The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.

One of the four cornerstones of a good decision-making process can stop this vicious cycle and save you from repeating mistakes (and making yourself crazy!) In the four-point framework for decision making, this is what we call Pattern Recognition. …


The Debate is Out

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The General Assembly of the United Nations (UNGA) begins today in New York with the annual General Assembly session. The UNGA is designed to bring all members of the United Nations together for the purpose of making critical global decisions, including peace and security, development, international law and more. By its own definition, the UNGA is “the main deliberative, policymaking and representative organ of the UN.”

In theory, uniting 193 countries for the purpose of establishing world policy sounds extremely promising. But there is a fundamental flaw in the execution of this meeting–namely, its format, which is comprised of “high-level thematic debates,” which are actually just Assembly members making speeches to justify their conclusions and incite agreement. …

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