Jim Michmerhuizen wrote
"One doesn't hear so much anymore about cause-and-effect. For human
planning, it's a wretched paradigm.
A simple concept such as this "backcasting" can sweep away centuries of
conceptual muck. Thanks for a lucid and provocative post."
This sounds like an either/or proposition. That is either we can have
backcasting or we can have cause and effect but we can't have both. Jim
sounds like he's not particularly interested in cause and effect anywat.
I offer you that we can have both/and. In fact, I think it is a very
powerful way to create the results we want in our lives. So consider
beginning with the end in mind of the results you want to create. Then
step backwards one step at a time and answer, "if this were in place, then
the natural consequences result would be the end in mind." Keep backward
chaining until you reach your curent situation. You know have a sequence
of actions that when performed will result in your end in mind. So we
marry cause and effect with backcasting et voila!
So where's the flaw in this process? First we may not execute in a way
that achieves the natural consequence result. Second we may have faulty
logic. Third the situation on which assumptions were predicated may change
and invalidate some assumptions. And I'm sure y'all can find others.
So where's the payoff? Learning to surf on the edge of chaos. Set a
goal; take action; check the result - did it move toward or away from the
goal?; check the assumptions; choose your next actions; take those
actions; check the result; PDCA ad infinitum. So get on your surf board
and set your sights on making a contribution (Success follows service).
Fall off and get back on. Keep doing it. Every time you fall off and
learn you move to a higher level of performance capability. Do it until
the day you die. You live in the moment; You are continually
contributing at a higher level; and when the tally comes up on the great
scorecard in the sky, you and the people you have touched will all score
off the chart!
You all may recall the effectiveness and ineffectiveness principles that I
posted last week (and that Barry Mallis described as "what I consider a
somewhat sterile pair of principles.) Au contraire mon ami, Barry. From
my paradigm they are only as sterile as the universe which I view as
vastly beautiful, complex, and unpredictable. Whoops, am I going to hoist
myself onto the horns of a dilemma here? Unpredictable doesn't sound like
cause and effect. Of course this is mhy it is so valuable to learn to
surf on the edge of chaos. With imperfect information we always get
surprises. Some of them of the delicious sort and some of them that lead
us to appreciate the delicious sort.
By the way, just in case my response to Barry's comment appears defensive,
it IS! Well, initially it was. Then it came across as the Mennen Skin
Bracer commercial slap in the face, "I needed that!" It's always
wonderful, after the initial shock wears off, to see, hear, feel how
someone else resonates to the words we use. Thank you, Barry, for your
"Anyway, enough. Here are four lines from our friend Rumi, on words:
At first, I sang and recited poems,
keeping the neighbors awake.
Now more intense, quieter.
When the fire flames up, smoke vanishes."
Four great lines deserve three more from Rumi.
Out beyond right and wrong
there is a field.
I'll meet you there.
Well, a customer is calling. Later.
-- Willard Jule firstname.lastname@example.org