By Morgan D. Jones
Part 1: Why We move off track --
1: considering considering --
2: Insights into challenge fixing --
Part 2: The Fourteen instruments --
3: challenge Restatement --
4: Pros-Cons-and-Fixes --
5: Divergent/Convergent pondering --
6: Sorting, Chronologies, and Time strains --
7: informal move Diagramming --
8: The Matrix --
9: The situation Tree --
10: Weighted scores --
11: speculation trying out --
12: Devil's Advocacy --
13: The chance Tree --
14: The software Tree --
15: The application Matrix --
16: complicated application research --
Part three: the place will we pass from right here? --
17: Your subsequent Steps --
Solutions to routines --
For additional studying --
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Extra resources for The thinker's toolkit : fourteen powerful techniques for problem solving
We know this because we have experienced the “flip-the-switch-make-the-light-go-on” cause-and-effect pattern before. The depth of our bias becomes apparent whenever we flip the switch and the light doesn’t come on. We’re surprised; our belief has been invalidated; suddenly we are conscious of the bias. We get the same reaction when we turn the spigot on a faucet and no water comes out—something we have always assumed was true (a cause-and-effect pattern) turns out to be false. I will keep reaching for the wall switch until I determine through experience that doing so won’t produce light.
They spring to life spontaneously whenever we confront a problem. They are imbedded like computer chips in our brain, ready to carry out their stealthy work at the drop of a problem. By “stealthy” I don’t mean to indicate that all of our hidden biases are detrimental or sinister; as I said, they enable us to function effectively in the world. But biases, like those other instinctive human mental traits, can lead us astray. Because it is uncharacteristic of Homo sapiens to identify, much less evaluate or—heaven forbid, challenge—the hidden biases underlying one’s perspective of a problem, we are unwitting slaves to them.
Educational institutions do teach these analytic techniques, but only to a chosen few. Universities and colleges (high schools, too) treat these techniques as esoteric methods relevant only to special fields of study, not as standard analytic approaches in mainstream curricula. Thus, comparatively few college graduates (and only a handful of high school graduates) are aware of these techniques and their immense potential as aids to problem solving. I base this statement not on any statistical survey but on my personal experience.