30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life

A Decision-Making Guide for Those Who Refuse to be Mediocre

Roger Kaufman, Ph.D.

HRD Press, Inc. • Amherst • Massachusetts

Copyright © 2006, Roger Kaufman

Published by:

HRD Press, Inc. 22 Amherst Road Amherst, MA 01002 800-822-2801 (U.S. and Canada) 413-253-3488 413-253-3490 (fax) www.hrdpress.com

All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. No part of this material may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system without written permission from the author.

ISBN 0-87425-916-9

Production services by Jean Miller Editorial services by Sally Farnham Cover design by Eileen Klockars

Table of Contents
Acknowledgements............................................................ v Introduction ........................................................................ vii Can you really choose to change your life? Can this book really do some good? A map of the templates and guides in this book. Chapter 1. Decisions, You, and Success ......................... What’s this all about anyway? The three Cs of life. The 30 seconds that can change your life. Basic decision-making steps. Old and non-useful conventional wisdom and old realities. 1

Chapter 2. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions ....... 13 Be strategic. The first guide for making useful decisions. Key success factor one: A Self-Assessment exercise. Shifting the bases for decisions: some new realities for making our decisions deliver success. Continuing and stable realities that may continue to guide us. Chapter 3. Don’t Confuse What with How (or Ends are Not the Same as Means) .............................. 39 Key success factor two: Everything is measurable. A guide to aligning ends and means (and what with how). Chapter 4. Practical Dreaming: An Imperative Focus for Everything You Use, Do, Produce, and Deliver ......... 57 Mega thinking and planning—vital. Key success factor three: Mega and the ideal vision.

Needs Versus Wants: Getting the Data for Justifiable Decisions.. community...... Aligning Results and Consequences: The Decision Success Model Story. Mega. Putting all the pieces together... Individual accomplishments: the building blocks of success........ you.................. society..... and success... 71 Key success factor four: Linking the now and the future... It Is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds........... Appendix to Chapter 5.................. Appendix: Bibliography........ 91 Key success factor five: Using needs data to select means: from gaps in results to useful solutions....... Organization and family accomplishments—the next link in the value chain..........137 About the Author...................143 ......... Self-assessment exercise. Appendix to Chapter 7...................................................iv Table of Contents Chapter 5..................... Getting your 30 seconds to be powerful.... Chapter 6....... The value chain again: linking planning and results. Before we close.............................111 Template 3: a decison-making process..... Chapter 7..........

In addition. Leon Lessinger. Roger Kaufman November 2005 . The flaws and problems of this book remain my own personal responsibility.S. I also wish to recognize the contributions of Albert Ellis and Victor Frankl who taught. been revised. Bits and pieces of this have been under development for many years and have grown. Richard Gerson also provided useful guidance. Blau and Harold Greenwald. and revised still again. Change. my thanks go to those who reviewed this book in its various stages. but a series of volumes defining the field of performance improvement as well as an “applications” series of which this is a part. I dedicate this book to Theodore H. The latest contributions to any value this book delivers were made by Professor Emeritus Dale Brethower who provided many (and often painful) suggestions for making this clearer and more correct. I owe much to many others including JC Fikes. you. Carkhuff who made some choices himself…for not only this book. or at least tried to teach. Finally. I had the privilege of working with both. me a great deal during the time when Blau. and consequences: Here is what decisions are about and how you can take control of determining your own future. I wish to thank the publisher of Human Resources Development Press Robert W. and how you can change your life for the better. International University (now the Alliant International University) in San Diego where we were professors in the School of Human Behavior. I also dedicate this to my wife and partner Jan Kaufman and our son Jac Kaufman who continue to teach me much…when I choose to learn from them. Bob Corrigan. Greenwald.Acknowledgments This book is about decisions. developed. I was much the better for the experiences. Dr. and Frankl were on the faculty with me at the U. as well as many great students who have withstood me and made me decide to become better and better. choices. Ellis. I also thank Chris Dearborn for sensitive and sensible editing.

.

It is based in real and practical application and research. and so is the fact that you can change your life in that time. it integrates the lessons learned from applications of science and research-based human performance technology to business. or at least a teaser to sell a book based only on a single simple-minded idea. If you are one of the few people on this planet who refuses to be mediocre and refuses to live a life of quiet desperation. This book is a practical-yet-rich guide to making good choices. this is for you. You. We make decisions all the time. and (yes) our shared society. The “active ingredient” in your success is you. Change is up to you. It is also supported by a virtual avalanche of change experts. We can choose to be happy or sad. if you decide to apply them. Sounds incredible at first. Can You Really Choose to Change Your Life? Of course. your organization. the 30 second title is real. In addition. The difficult part (only at first glance) is getting yourself ready for those critical 30 seconds. your partners.1 The promise of this book is based on the insights of two of the three great psychotherapists of recent years. and the military worldwide. lead to success for you. industry. This book provides three guides (or templates) that can. healthy or ill. depressed or hopeful. We can choose to be mediocre or to have real success. Thirty seconds. Thirty seconds is all that is required to get you to move from mediocrity to success. And that is what this book is about. The choice is yours. reactive or proactive. . What is here is useful to you in your work and in your life. And all of this is based on cold hard reality. No. And it will work for you.Introduction Thirty seconds? Give me a break! Sounds like some kind of scam.

” “But life and work are complex! How can you do any good by pretending that one idea will make everything wonderful?” “Sure. or do nothing. “What makes you think you will be the first? This is a good book—good stuff—but that is secondary. My job is to sell books. As I sat in front of one of the most successful editors in the business. Make up your mind. well-written. So simple in fact. nothing more and nothing less. Either you want to sell books or you want to try to do some good.” The editor was right. Take one simple idea and twist and turn it a hundred ways. There is a simple rule for selling ‘help’ books. Want to sell? Then get practical. Up to now. One or the other. the leading management thinker Peter Drucker has been reported as saying . get real-world. write one to simply make money. At least for what spells market success.” “I can’t attempt both?” I asked naively. Can This Book Really Do Some Good? Talk about choice. He was very clear: “Make up your mind. I was taken aback.viii 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life It is up to you to decide to change from the payoffs you are getting now from your decisions to ones that will make you more successful—and happy. The “wonderful” flavor-of-themonth books all seemed to be clear. and simple. If we don’t do it the conventional way. I made a choice. but those who sell books—really hit the top 20—don’t confuse solid guidance with promoting one simple idea. You can’t have it both ways. your books will be selling for 99 cents at the leftover book sales. but never drift far from the one simple idea. life and work are complex. doc. I had one to make: write this book to provide something useful. The choice was not without disagreement from others.

But then again. We can. . Could I both provide something useful to the rich tapestry of life and have a successful book? ix But life is not simple.Introduction about this barrage of popular books. Sure I wanted to really help people make useful decisions that would lead to happiness and success. and ask these questions before jumping into a solution.” but it is not. not making the decision for you or even telling you what decision to make. So I did what I advise others to do: Think like a researcher and ask relevant questions about the world I wanted to help create. And sure. It is about getting ready for success—getting ready for those 30 critical seconds. and one simplistic guiding rule won’t do anything but sell books. Even the Almighty could not boil the rules down to less than ten! I decided to go ahead with what you are now holding in your hands. psychological theory. It will be work for you (and for me to convince you. Here is the promise: Your intelligence will not be insulted by this book following the conventional wisdom that states that you and I cannot keep track of more than one idea at a time. and practice to your success will be straightforward. And what you are now holding is an example of an editor and publisher who understand the importance of going beyond quick-fix bromides.” I agree. Our lives seem complex. I want to have a successful book. but this application of research. What follows provides the rationales that are sometimes counter-intuitive and fly in the face of conventional wisdom. Sure. “I wish it were that simple. the 30-second promise sounds like a quick-fix of the “sell-through-oversimplification. I wasn’t happy with an artificial choice. The book is about getting you ready for the 30-second decision. mediocrity is the product of following conventional wisdom. of the reality in this approach). perhaps.

or guides. Use a wide-world view—a big picture. 5. we might call them “first principles”) Decision-making success elements A six-step problem-solving guide • The reasons behind each of the guides and tools along with uncluttered details of why they make practical sense for you to use A Map of the Templates and Guides in This Book Below is a table that summarizes the templates and guides presented in this book: Template/Guide Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions Components 1. 2. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. (continued) . 3. before you make them. Five guiding success factors (if we were physicists. Use and link three levels of planning and results.x This book contains: 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life • Three templates. and to evaluate them after they are made These three guides are: 1. 2. for framing every decision you make and calibrating the value and worth of your decisions. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. Differentiate between ends and means. Define “need” as a gap in results. 4. 3.

You are what you choose to do and not do. Happily I found an editor who was not hung up on selling books alone. and your job. but thought more of you to sign this book. My thanks for restoring my confidence in publishing. The contents of this book will provide you with practical guides and tools that will lead to both personal and workplace success—that will get you ready for those critical 30 seconds. The decision is yours. . Endnote 1. Decide to put them to work for you as you define and achieve success. and you harvest the consequences of your choices. You are only one decision—one good decision that only takes 30 seconds—away from success…to get started in deciding to change your life. and providing examples—real-life examples—for all these interacting realities.Introduction Template/Guide The Decision Success Model A Problem-Solving Process Components Decision-making commitments Six steps xi This book is not about psychotherapy (although some of the concepts and tools could be useful for such). It works. This book is about choices and decision making. so I will be working with you. Everything in life is connected. your personal relations.

.

and it all depends on our willingness to change. We can be the victims of change—wait for things to happen and then react— or be the masters of change. Most of us make decisions on the basis of habit. But all decisions have consequences and payoffs. We all make them. We can choose happiness or choose something else. We can choose to take control or be victims. . The Three Cs of Life There are three Cs1 in our life: • • • Change Choice Consequences We can count on change happening. Making good decisions is easy. We can take control. Or accept mediocrity and all that it carries with it. You may choose to change that approach to decision making. Decisions are made. and we can improve our personal and professional lives. We can make choices in our life. or fear. either short or longer term. and Success What’s This All About Anyway? Decisions. but the process for getting ourselves ready to make good decisions is not conventional. conventionality. We are what we do. Don’t like the consequences of your decisions? Change. or wait for things to happen to us. Some are good and some are not.Chapter 1 Decisions. Success in life and work is possible. We can make better decisions. lust. You. What we do determines pretty much what happens to us in life and work. usually without thinking about the consequences. and we do what we decide to do.

alienation. and other problems bothersome enough to seek professional help. there are consequences. Some would rather deal with what is currently coming our way than get out of their comfort zone and take a risk—a risk to change what we do and how we act. No matter our choices. . We are responsible for the consequences in our lives. the consequences are ours to own. Means—our choices about change—lead to consequences that are ends and results. serious anger. If bad things happen. It seems smart to link our choices to the consequences we want and not leave it up to what fate and indecision deal us. We can improve our own odds by knowing about and controlling chance through our choices. or payoffs. Three Cs of life. Not making choices is a choice.2 30 Seconds That Can Save Your Life And no matter what we do. We can be the masters of change or the victim of it all depending on our choices. But what is really riskier? Continuing on with the predictable yet painful (or perhaps just boring and unrewarding) or deciding to make things better? Choices. or don’t do. Consequences. Results. We can get beyond our history and our conventional ways of thinking and acting. Impacts. What happens to us in our lives is largely up to us. including psychotherapy. We want to get help so that we can become healthier and happier. We all make choices. We know how to deal with whatever comes our way based on our current decisions and their consequences. Change is scary for most of us. two of the few outstanding psychotherapists2 of the past 50 years independently told me that actual psychotherapy only takes 30 seconds. we can be resilient or “give up” and drift from day-to-day. Change. However. The 30 Seconds that Can Change Your Life Sometimes our continuing poor decisions lead to depression.

long time? Don’t we hear about those agonizing periods of therapy and analysis. of blaming mother. and this belief became a basic inspiration for this book on change. So we can choose to be better. Simple. has shown us. But what about the conventional wisdom of psychotherapy taking a long. until they let out “the secret”: Actually psychotherapy only takes 30 seconds! The rest of the time is spent getting ready to decide (and commit) to change. Thirty seconds. please think of the basic steps outlined in the table on the following page. it only takes 30 seconds to decide to change your life—from mediocrity to success. We can decide to be successful and happy. father. but it is about the same kinds of decisions that psychotherapy attempts to promote. Simple. and getting there depends on the decisions you make and the context you use to make those decisions. and deserve. of digging in the past. This book is not about psychotherapy. If we want to alter the payoffs and consequences based on our decisions. This book is about making successful decisions. . friends. or relatives for our current situation? Yet two of the very best professionals in psychotherapy say that all the time is simply getting ready to decide to change. I still do. we often make decisions without really identifying the payoffs we really want.Chapter 1. and Success 3 Thirty seconds! How can that be true? I was puzzled at first. No. You. Change is within our control. So. Revealing. Decisions. I believed them. of unearthing old ghosts and demons. But as the late Harold Greenwald. decision expert. When we talk about decisions and changes. this book is just about practical decision making and change while building on practical research and insights gained from psychology. just decide to change: change from the behaviors that give us the unwanted payoffs to the ones that will deliver the desired ones. but it seems difficult to many to decide to change. isn’t it? You will likely be uncomfortable at first. Elegant. Getting to that point is what is more complex.

No matter how much I try. I do what I am told by my boss.4 Identify the payoffs you do want. Big business controls it all. . I would not dare risk my job by objecting. Government controls everything. Identify the behaviors that will deliver the desired payoffs. There are forces at work that determine what is going to happen. Some people would like to think they are powerless and that they have no control over what happens to them. The planning never involves me. Nobody can really understand. those with the money and power will decide.4 30 Seconds That Can Save Your Life Basic Decision-Making Steps (Based on Harold Greenwald’s work)3 • • • • • • • Identify the payoffs you are getting now that you don’t want. Decide to change your behavior. Listen to their rhetoric: She made me do it. Change. Identify the behaviors you are displaying that deliver the negative payoffs. I really wasn’t loved enough as a child. A few people here make all the decisions. Be ready to decide to change in the future if you want different payoffs.

I can’t make a difference. so I will not be able to as well. The Far Right calls all the shots. Problems always come from other sources. Decisions. You can’t fight City Hall. If it isn’t my direct responsibility. You. We frequently retreat into a role of helplessness and never take the risk of taking control of our own lives and our own futures. Others have all the power and we have none. My ideas will never be accepted. nobody cares as much about you as you (even your sainted mother) and you . and Success Nobody listens to me. I have too much work to try anything new. 5 You get the idea. or we generalize from the experiences of others to ourselves even though we. Nothing really changes… and it never will. and our circumstances. I don’t get involved. Often we adopt problems that are not ours. why don’t you be that person? Frankly. The media never tells the truth.Chapter 1. we are never allowed to control. We are simply victims in the theatre of life. I am too fat. When we use these excuses. If someone else is going to make decisions that affect your life. My mother really was mean and I still carry those scars. We are just pawns in a larger game. Often we accept the plight of others as being our own: Sara couldn’t get a job. Or. We have tried that before. we decide to be like the pack—to be mediocre. My cousin just got laid off. My work is never appreciated. might actually be very different. times are tough out there. The Far Left calls all the shots. What we hear is never what is really happening. Nothing is ever our fault.

to… well. You can decide to change. or playing the role of one. if you accept a “victim role. only you.” you have made the decision to do so. they think they can blame whatever happens on external forces and that they have no control. to become the master of change and not the victim of change. to take control.6 30 Seconds That Can Save Your Life should be the first person in line to decide what you do and what happens to you. Decisions. a poor family. It only takes a decision. The Victim Role. bad environment. No one is responsible for your behavior. Or possibly worse. 1. One manifestation of resigning oneself to mediocrity and accepting whatever comes is taking the role of a victim. There is nothing—absolutely nothing—you can do to change that. Ted Blau offered some good advice: Everyone has to take two losses in life.5 We often blame others for our problems and our current situation. Or we can decide to get the payoffs and consequences we want and likely . You were never really appreciated as being as good as you really were when you were a child. You are responsible for what happens because of what you do. From a bad mother to terrible siblings. When one acts helpless. This leads to a basic truth: • • You are what you do. Make choices that bring you the results and consequences you want. is a sure-fire prescription to become and stay mediocre. you get the idea. In fact. We can decide to keep doing what we are doing and get the payoffs and consequences that come with those. Being a victim. 2. nasty bullies.

Not making a decision is a decision. This is risky. You. 2. When we reject something because it bothers us (often rationalizing one or more of these three possibilities) we use pushbacks: ways of blocking something. Or we can decide to get the payoffs and consequences we want and likely deserve. Decisions. “untested. But make sure that your decision about it is not simply because it is new.” or never-before considered by you. When we resist something. Not making a decision is a decision. Let’s take a closer look in our effort to encourage you to make decisions to change your life for the better.Chapter 1. So. Many “hot” ideas seem to be fuzzy yet comfortable. . or have faculty positions at an Ivy League school) might not be good for your mental health. Risk is often required to achieve success—the real success not being achieved currently. but we feel under control. What is being proposed is not useful. The old and non-useful conventional wisdom of the times has not served us well. When something bothers us. 3. it might be just because we feel that doing something different is scary or will put us out of control. Listening to the “experts” (even if they write big-selling books. Or. We will discuss possible pushbacks as we go. it can be for several reasons: 1. and Success 7 deserve. We know how to deal with the payoffs we now earn (even if they are undesirable). What is being proposed is not understandable. we might “block” a new idea and possibility by simply saying “I don’t understand” in hopes the possibility will go away. New is not necessarily bad. or your success. What is being proposed is scary. appear on talk shows. This should always be the primary filter. So decide on the basis of what will be good for you. decide on the basis of what will be good for you. often using logicalsounding reasons that turn out not to be rational.

while failure is an orphan. Even if you “follow the leader(s).” you own the successes or failures. thinking. If we deal with just one problem at a time. As one slogan has it. no matter how earnest our excuses. we will miss .” Not all conventional wisdom or “automated responses to our environment” are wrong. Be ready to change. When something fails. Here are some nuggets that should give us all pause about following the leaders of today: We deal with problems one at a time. but not sensible. “Success has a million parents. Comfort and continuing past habits for their own sake have their costs. One saying is worth considering: “Every pearl starts with an irritant. Why not pat ourselves on the back for our past accomplishments and be alert to how we might respond differently in the future? The past is just prologue. it isn’t an iron-clad guide to a successful future.6 please remember that they were once the conventional wisdom of the day—the advice of the socalled experts of the time. you still are held accountable…even if you followed orders or used the accepted methods. As we review these. and flat-out wrong. they interact.” Old and Non-useful Conventional Wisdom and Old Realities Let’s review some old realities and see what was accepted in the past but was wrong—popular. it does not matter who told us to do it that way—failure is failure. acceptable. We should not automatically do what we have always done.8 30 Seconds That Can Save Your Life Old and non-useful conventional wisdom has frequently failed us. Most of what happens in our world is going on at the same time as other things. and tools. conventional. Convenient. When we rely on old and non-useful conventional wisdom—on old realities—we find trouble facing us square in the face. When failure rears its ugly head. But they are not always right either. We can benefit from what has worked in the past and change what has not.

You. This is why this book doesn’t simply deal with one problem at a time. single-issue politics are devastating. Only paying attention to one thing at a time can create problems for ourselves as well as problems created by others.8 . if local politicians decide to widen a road. Because one’s personal life interacts with our other lives that are running parallel to each other—self. all of it. Decisions. even with the best of intentions. and our decisions have to take into account that complexity. These quick-fix single-issue intentions to help can all happen. They count votes. thus.Chapter 1. we might be ignoring education and training for them at the same time and. When we provide food for the poor. Another problem with this linear thinking is that we don’t respond to the reality that life is complex and lots of things go on at the same time. and work—all of these are interwoven in this book. We have to look at and account for all of the subsystems—parts of the whole—in our world while improving the overall system. A physician cannot prescribe a drug without knowing possible interactions with other drugs (and what your body produces). And we should hold them accountable for their choices as we should hold ourselves accountable for our choices. Single issue and linear thinking are not very useful. Things in our world are complex (like it or not). which was not at all the original intention). It would be like driving in traffic and only paying attention to other drivers in our rearview mirror and not realizing that other “problems” are also all around us—in traffic and in life. family and friends. For example. and we all should count useful results. If we increase benefits for single mothers. in so doing they often invite more traffic and more congestion by making the new pathway more attractive. We know that we can say something on one topic to a significant other and not realize that other things might well be operating at the same time (“that’s not a good color on you” might interact with feelings of being fat. For example. and Success 9 the whole. perpetuate dependence and ill-will. And we pay for it. such as personal ones. we might be giving negative incentives for marriage and lasting partnerships. Yet politicians7 pander to single issues all the time.

Duell. Chairman and Founder of Digital Equipment Corp. Chairman of IBM. U. 1981 Heavier-than-air flying machines are an impossibility. once these were the paradigms of choice—staying in the comfort zone stuff. – Irving Fisher. 1872 Are we not glad that physicians and pharmaceutical companies did not stop with this “wisdom of the day”? 640K ought to be enough for anybody. Here are more old paradigms and non-useful conventional wisdom that drove people and decisions who would not think critically about the person or statement: Stocks have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau. 1929 Many wished that were so. – Thomas Watson. Toulouse. – Lord Kelvin.S. 1895 I think there is a world market for maybe five computers. 1899 Glad not many people listened. . Office of Patents. There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home.10 30 Seconds That Can Save Your Life One definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different set of results. Louis Pasteur’s theory of germs is ridiculous fiction. 1977 Any in the list you find useful today? Remember. 1943 We can surmise that Dell and Gateway did not agree. Royal Society. Commission. – Charles H.. Economics Professor. – Bill Gates. Everything that can be invented has been invented. – Ken Olson. – Pierre Pachet. President. Yale University. Professor of Physiology.

However. psychologically. Conventional. Payoffs are the rewards and consequences of our decisions. Viktor Frankl once mentioned to me that “there are no unwilling victims.” This likely came from his experiences in Nazi death camps where he noted that those who survived usually were the ones who would not allow anyone to take away their own self-worth…he felt it had to be given away. If you still have the book in your hands. Richard Gerson suggests a fourth C: Commitment. 4. you have gotten over “I have heard all of this stuff before” enough to investigate further. or powerful does not mean blindly following them will be to our advantage. There is a lot of old and non-useful conventional wisdom out there about personal relationships. . Other old and non-useful conventional wisdom is that one has to “buy love” and spend to get affection in return. These are the basic steps of Greenwald’s Direct Decision Therapy. Just because someone is the boss. 5.Chapter 1. You. Powerful and rational: And they are practical for everyday life. or that there are “guy cars” and “chick cars” and not ones that are functional and acceptable to both genders. And wrong. You have just made decision number one on the road to your success! Endnotes 1. including that women should act dependent or they should never let a guy know she cares about him. and Success 11 Get the idea? Even the rich and famous can get it wrong about both now and in the future. 3. 2. Men only want one thing and women only want protection and security. famous. Commonly accepted. Decisions. And I was influenced by the third one but did not have the benefit of as much direct interaction with him. an author on the New York Times Best Seller List. I suggest Frankl is correct: We can choose to accept victimhood and give away our self-worth. Dr. This is a harsh insight given how terrorists for centuries have victimized innocents.

One definition of politics provided by Peter Senge is “when who is more important than what. Unfortunately. Another interesting definition of a politician is “someone who as soon as they see the light and the end of the tunnel quickly builds more tunnel. however. Some of the items I use here are from the Internet (and thanks to many graduate students who have discovered and filtered these).” 8. And if they will let me know. so I cannot always credit the real contributor.” This is a confusion of means and ends. I hope he is wrong. and I sure hope you will help me prove he is. some of what is there is unedited. 7. a noted biologist told me several years ago that less than 5% of the world is psychologically capable of understanding the difference between the whole and its parts. . Much to my dismay. often not confirmed. and not attributed to original authors or sources. My thanks to them.12 30 Seconds That Can Save Your Life 6. I will be very happy to give credit to them. The Internet is a valuable source of information.

or templates. and Defining how to know when you have arrived. Being strategic is nothing more than: • • • Selecting where you want to head. This chapter gets you ready to make useful decisions—decisions that will deliver success. That one critical decision—the 30-second one—is based on three guides. Tactics deal with the choices for getting you to the destination you select. make you strategic.1 Be Strategic Strategic? Yes. So let’s get to those tools for making useful decisions and for changing your life for the better. Confirming why you really want to get there. Strategy is about defining the most useful destination before deciding how to get from where you are to that destination. This chapter deals with one of the important ingredients: decisions and decision making. Thus you will put means (how-to-do-its) into proper relation with ends (results and consequences): DESTINATION (Ends) MEANS (and Resources) PAYOFFS and CONSEQUENCES . and make you happier. that provide the tools for success. With the precise definition of destination—where you are headed and how to tell when you have arrived—you may then make practical choices on how to get from where you are to where you want to be.Chapter 2 The Five Keys for Successful Decisions The promise: You are only one good decision away from changing your life—a decision that only takes 30 seconds.

Life is complex. The first guide is presented on the next page. both organizational and personal). Let’s preview the five key success factors for making successful decisions and then discuss each and show how you use them all to make successful decisions for thinking. make-over-your personality. and being strategic. overnight guides. or guides. and harvesting success. doing. for useful decision making. and so will be the pieces and parts of successful decision making. What??? Up front we told you that this wouldn’t be conventional or usual. also based on the five keys. Let’s start looking into them so that you can see for yourself how practical they really are. planning. planning. . We will take these five factors and show you how to apply them to your life and to your world. but rather a new and refreshing way of thinking. we investigate the whys of making the first single decision that will make you successful and set the stage for other decisions. The First Guide for Making Useful Decisions We promised in the Introduction to give you three templates. but let’s explain each and show how they are very practical indeed. These five key success factors might sound theoretical at first. Ready? First let’s look at the unvarnished versions and then explain each one in terms of how each may be important for you. These are not the single-issue. This is not a bunch of “standard” business school slogans or quick fixes2 (they have caused enough problems). they can be applied to business as well as to our personal life (yes. evaluating. to continue on the same path to success. The five key success factors are general.14 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life After previewing all five key success factors.

will help you be successful: Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. It is the one that keeps us away from success unless we choose to overcome our natural . As we look at each one. Define “need” as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. Key Success Factor One Here is the first successful decision-making key that. means. 2. Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how) and prepare all objectives to measure accomplishment. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions: Becoming a Strategic Thinker* 15 1. 4. Let’s Keep Moving On. Chapters 2 through 6 will each deal with one of the five key success factors. or methods). please remember that they form a fabric where all are important and interrelated—all of them. if you choose to apply. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. and continuous improvement. and it’s a tough one because it involves risk. 3. Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega)3 of what kind of world. we want for all of us. *In each chapter. Macro/Outputs. these five key decision factors are provided with the major topic of that chapter in bold.Chapter 2. 5. including tomorrow’s child. decision making. in measurable performance terms. But it will all come together for you. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. as the underlying basis for planning. Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/Outcomes. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. Micro/Products)4 for decision making. This is the one that controls all of the others.

I just follow them. They have a zone in which they feel comfortable operating. it isn’t necessarily useful. Sure. Sometimes acting on old experiences and understandings cause us to act powerless: “That kind of decision cannot be made at my level. Not true.” or “Those are the rules.16 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life inertia. but get off “auto-pilot” and consider each new situation as an opportunity to apply different and more successful responses. Recall the often wellintentioned advice that we have internalized: To get along. They tend to repeat past responses even in the context of new realities. even though we know doing so will lead to failure. We have all seen “automated” responses based on old scripts: “All blonds are…” “All men are…” “You just can’t trust that kind…” Many of these stereotypes will make us miss new opportunities. go along. new situations. and often non-productive. and new surroundings. Look for different and sensible ways to view life and what happens to you. we miss the opportunity to find new things that will work. . just because it is old wisdom doesn’t make it wrong. they get tense. We know the pressure to conform: to see what the other gal or guy is doing and follow that. and when they push themselves out (or someone forces them out) of that area.5 When we address today only on the basis of yesterday. and willing to change as well. It is said that 95 percent of all people get up each day and do exactly what they did the day before: routine. just miserable and predictable. We tend to respond almost automatically and assume that our responses to each situation that worked in the past will work for us now. situations change. At least they know things will be predictable: no surprises. I don’t make them. and defensive—in other words. able. even if it means staying miserable. and you should be ready. predictable.” We usually try to find ways to keep on doing what we already know and do. Most people prefer to stay where they are comfortable. Times change. but comfortable. irritable. human. While this is comfortable.

It also keeps us away from making useful decisions. you don’t have time to rock the boat. Don’t make waves. you can do what you want. Do what the client wants. it isn’t much of a risk to choose to think and respond differently from the way you do now. Do what the boss wants. Benchmark the leaders. When you are boss. Ever. Watch and do what the others in power do. Giving up what will work—or bring success—for what is acceptable and comfortable means giving up our unique abilities and goals. Don’t anger anyone. Which of the above will you follow? Which will you continue to choose? They are all convenient ways to make poor decisions and continue on a conventional path. Options Are Available to You: Choices. Do it the way we have always done it. …and you can add more from your own experience. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 17 If you are busy rowing. champagne. How much is the short-term acceptance of others worth to you? How much of yourself and your future success are you willing to trade? Can you take acceptance to the bank? Does it taste anything like steak. or caviar? Here is a list of usual and conventional ways of behaving. Don’t trust others. If you don’t like what is happening to you now. Choices.Chapter 2. check those that you now do and those you might consider not doing (changing): . For each one. Do it the way the consultant says to do it. Choices. Do it the way the popular authors say to do it.

If you are busy rowing. Watch and do what those in power do. Don’t make waves. you can do what you want. When you are boss. Benchmark the leaders. Do it the way the popular authors say to do it. Do what the client wants. Ever. you don’t have time to rock the boat. Do it the way the consultant says to do it. Change is important. Don’t anger anyone. . Do it the way we have always done it. Do what the boss wants. Don’t trust others. Only you can decide to change and what to change.18 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Conventional Ways of Behaving I Do That Now I Might Consider Changing To get along. Other: _________________________ q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q q Do any of your responses to these statements provide inspiration for deciding to make some changes in the ways you now do things in your life? Deciding to Change and Selecting What to Change. go along.

. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 19 Only you can decide to take a risk and change the payoffs in life you are now getting. But what to change and what to keep? How about taking a look into yourself? Self-Assessment Exercise Following is a set of statements that provide some options for you—options for change to look at how you now act and how you believe it would be useful to act.6 When you have done this. you may then see some options for deciding on useful change. For each statement. rate yourself on the two dimensions. You can decide to be successful and that requires some change. and on the right side for What Should Be.Chapter 2. on the left side of the statement for What Is.

am happy with where I am in my organization. Please provide two ratings for each statement.20 Change Self-Assessment WHAT IS Indicate the relative frequency with which the following statements are true concerning the "drivers" for the way you make decisions. am happy with my personal relationships. don't care what others think when I make a decision. watch others to see what they do before acting. do things the way I have done them in the past. make decisions without objective data. am happy with my life. if Ever 2 = Almost Never 3 = Not Usually 4 = Sometimes 5 = Quite Frequently 6 = Consistently WHAT SHOULD BE Describe how you think you should be operating. Use the following scale: 1 = Rarely. worry about my decisions once made. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I avoid making decisions. make a decision without the approval of my boss. am open to new ideas and frames of reference. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life (continued) . make decisions that will lead to my becoming the boss. make decisions in order to be accepted by others. would rather do what will be accepted rather than that which will be successful. want acceptance of others even at high personal cost. using only my experience or my hunches. Describe how you see you currently operating. feel uncomfortable doing things that are out of my friends' norms.

I evaluate the consequences of my decisions on the job. I make decisions that will lead to organizational success. I make decisions that lead to good personal relationships. Please provide two ratings for each statement. Use the following scale: 1 = Rarely. Describe how you see you currently operating. I use evaluation results for fixing and improving. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 1 2 3 4 5 6 I take risks to be successful. I use evaluation results for blaming myself or others. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 1 2 3 4 5 6 21 . I use fads. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions CHANGE SELF-ASSESSMENT Indicate the relative frequency with which the following statements are true concerning the "drivers" for the way you make decisions. I evaluate the consequences of my decisions for my personal relationships. if Ever 2 = Almost Never 3 = Not Usually 4 = Sometimes 5 = Quite Frequently 6 = Consistently WHAT IS WHAT SHOULD BE Describe how you think you should be operating. I keep acting the same ways even though they lead to my unhappiness. The impact of what I do and what my organization delivers for external clients and our shared society is my primary focus. I make decisions that will lead to personal success.Chapter 2. I evaluate the consequences of my decisions for my organization.

For example. A warning. Define What Is and the results they deliver and then consider What Should Be and note areas for changing what you do—your decisions and the consequences of those decisions. If there are two or more units of distance between What Is and What Should Be for an item. doing. and relating? Continuing to respond to our world the way we have always done in the past can often fail us and will likely continue to do so. you are considering making decisions that will bring you personal as well as organizational success. 4. Want more reasons to give up old ways of thinking. always wanting more data might block you from timely and appropriate action. List the items you would like to change in priority order. List the top five in priority order—in the order in which you would like to close the gaps between What Is and What Should Be.22 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Using This Self-Assessment. . Scan the gaps between What Is and What Should Be for these self-assessment items. 1. consider making a decision to close that gap. however: Not all items in the list are “good” for success. That is risky. Study the items and decide which ones will lead to successful choices and which ones might not. and identify any choices or patterns of choices and decisions you might want to change. After all.7 Keep what works now. 3. Or watching and using what others do to copy “best practices” for your own use assume that their objectives are the same as yours. and give up what doesn’t. Other people’s (or other organizations’) objectives are rarely the same. 2. But be ready to change how you respond and act.

even if you followed orders or used the accepted methods. what do we replace it with? Here are some new realities to guide our thinking. and doing. They don’t build a reality base for our thinking. we know we can no longer just focus on individual performance improvement or single tasks or jobs—systems approaches. Failure is failure. there are a lot of stereotypes about our world that don’t serve us well.Chapter 2. thinking. As we saw earlier. and tools. After September 11. we went over some unfortunate old-paradigm thinking and advice: what is conventional. you still are held accountable. Every- • . Are there any in that list in Chapter 1 that you find useful today? Remember. In getting ready for that fateful 30-second decision. When something fails. Even if you “follow the leader(s)” you own the successes or failures. In Chapter 1. at one time these were the paradigms of choice: staying in the comfort zone stuff. we have to get ourselves into a context—our world—that makes good sense. But if the current (and past) don’t work so well anymore. When failure rears its ugly head. In fact. it does not matter who told us to do it that way. Shifting the Bases for Decisions: Some New Realities for Making Our Decisions Deliver Success There are new realities to be considered if we are to define and deliver personal as well as organizational success. 2001. planning. it might be dead wrong.8 Based on research (including my own). we frequently find trouble facing us square in the face. and doing: • Tomorrow is not a linear projection of yesterday or today. planning. you can't solve today's or tomorrow’s problems with the same paradigms and tools that created them. popular. Comfort has its costs. no matter how earnest the excuses. there are some new realities to consider if you are to make useful—successful—decisions. and accepted might not be useful at all. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 23 When we rely on old realities.

policies. Adding more bottom lines fragments the whole of societal value added. not fix the blame. do. Useful change has to add value to all partners and stakeholders. If you can't predict the future. laws. produce. Don’t be the best of the best. we should fix the problem. “If I am the solution. There are two “bottom lines” for every organization: societal and conventional. what’s the problem?”) • • • • • • • . not just what they want. and deliver must add value at the societal level: a system approach. not blaming. Reality is not divided into disciplines. Ask. sections. “If my organization is the solution. We are now getting better and better at doing that which should not be done at all (modeled after Drucker). Evaluation is about improvement.24 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life thing we use. courses. agencies. Making money and doing societal good must not be mutually exclusive. We should offer customers what they could really use. departments. or issues. what’s the problem?” (Or ask.9 • • • • • Think globally as you act locally. It is easier to kill an organization than it is to change it (modeled after Peters). be the only one who does what you do (Jerry Garcia). create it (modeled after Drucker).

and thanks to a handful of heroes. These will be useful only if you choose to shift from immediate comfort and what others are doing to new decisions to move from the current payoffs to a new paradigm of defining the kind of person you want to become. and deliver must add value at the societal level: a system approach. Regardless of the reasons. The Japanese economy that was so strongly respected and feared in the 1980s didn’t continue to dominate.m. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 25 These new realities can guide us as we make new decisions—decisions to change the consequences of our current decisions. do.Chapter 2. and the world. or systems approaches. 2001. Which ones will you choose? Why? Which ones will you decide to use? Why? Read the description of each new reality below to help you decide. they looked only for people with . recall how terrorists on September 11. and quickly. your organization. Tomorrow is not a linear projection of yesterday. sudden. After September 11.. Don’t plan for slow and smooth evolutions. not making smooth transitions over time. and steep shifts. Speaking of things that happen fast. a new reality was thrust on us—tragically. but bet on fast and dramatic ones. but instead it sank quickly. changed the lives of all of us around 9:00 a. On that fateful morning. produce. Things seem to jump and leap. We did not take as long to get from the abacus to the computer as we did to get from counting on our fingers to the abacus. Things don’t progress smoothly in our world. and then choosing what results you commit to deliver to yourself. The bicycle did not slowly evolve into the motorcycle to the automobile to the airplane. sudden. steep. D. security screeners were trained to look at splinters of a whole. a little less tragedy in Pennsylvania). The progression was fast. Everything we use. horribly. and dramatic. We often go in step-functions—big. 2001.C. in New York (and then in Washington. others. we know we can no longer just focus on individual performance improvement.

When we look at one or more of the parts. and all aspects of an organization into our decisions. including society now and in the future. It is the whole that has to define the parts and how they all must work together. When we look at the whole. No longer can we focus on individual systems. that is a systems approach. “Why are five unrelated passengers each carrying box cutters?” Instead. terror beyond our wildest expectations. they missed the whole pattern. shipping. No longer can we focus on a part of the whole and not the whole.” It was not in their paradigm to ask. Don’t confuse a tough jogging routine with overall health and well-being. First define the whole—the biggest picture—and then the parts. but rather we have to focus on the whole system. To use a systems approach and not a system approach is like fixing sales and marketing without also including manufacturing. Let’s take a look at some examples of your current personal situation of wholes and parts: . When they looked at each passenger as “the system”—a systems approach—and not the overall safety of all—a system approach—they had little chance of averting terror. human resources. What a difference an “s” makes. that is a system approach. Just looking at the parts of a system and not the whole. Don’t confuse the parts. It would be like taking care to focus on our personal appearance subsystem (confusing that with the whole story) and forgetting about our personal hygiene as well as our personal people-skills. with the whole. Wholes and Parts: A System Approach and a Systems Approach.26 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life individual weapons and not also to a holistic driver of “arrive alive. And the world of most civilized people turned upside down in an instant. they only looked with a unit of analysis or focus on each passenger carrying a then-legal box cutter and not the fatal pattern of five people on the same aircraft carrying one each. no matter how well designed and managed. even though it might at first seem like semantic quibbling.

Understandable. For example. as well as the immediate. the United States is a major consumer of energy. They all are competing (along with others) for limited resources. the whole will be better off. but a bit deceptive. it is just a piece of overall happiness and survival. As the song goes. do. produce. and the consequences of that are usually seen as ourselves being the center of the universe.” Realize that whole and parts must be related and linked. and assume if you do a good enough job. “it ain’t necessarily so. it seems easier at first to focus on the parts and try to fix those. what are the long. so are other evolving business entities.Chapter 2. what you use. costs and consequences? In business and in life. we must consider it in the context of the world stage (my using up all of a resource that others cannot get access to might create external conflict). While we might be interested in our survival and quality of life.” . It is important that we see ourselves in the context of our shared world. Looking inward for our focus can be deceptive. and now. While one’s partner is important. Who wins? Who can blackmail either or both of us? What should we give away in order to buy energy? And if and when we do. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions Example My partner10 World well-being11 My organization My neighborhood Global business12 My job X X X X X Whole (or System) 27 Part (or Systems) X From your personal perspective. we must act on the basis of “We are vital parts inside of large wholes. such as China. deliver.

Recent research13 shows us that change programs have a failure rate of about 60 percent in the first year and almost all go away by the end of the second year. change your behaviors. For example. These are a blueprint for assured failure of change initiatives. Our life partners and friends often tell us to change. both organizational or personal. The advice here is to look at the whole while focusing attention on parts of the whole. . but usually fall to dust around January 2nd or 3rd simply because there doesn’t seem to be a real reason to change. your boss wants to initiate a quality improvement program and does not provide appropriate incentives for all who will act on the change. do. change programs are designed without revealing the fact that the changes will be to the advantage of a very few and not all stakeholders. So there seem to be two reasons that change initiatives don’t work: (1) the payoffs are for a few and not all. and deliver to adding value to our shared world. In your organization. produce. Useful change has to add value to all partners and stakeholders. and/or (2) we ask for change but don’t change the rewards for the change we request. and often the suggestion is good for the person making the suggestion and not necessarily for us. in terms of adding value to the whole: the survival of our shared planet. Align what you use. This is a variation of the September 11 new reality. In your personal life. but only in terms of its adding value to your whole persona and its worth and value. fix parts of the organization while realizing that each part must add value to the whole. Why? More often than not. such as recycling. New Year’s resolutions abound. Responsible environmentalists have suggested this world view and the associated advice that leads to working on specific good deeds.28 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Think globally as you act locally. someone might suggest to you to be nice and help around the house while they litter and sleep late.

not the whole. choose not to change simply to feel comfortable for the here-and-now. “I am not going to change.” Yet they know that being overweight leads to lousy health and before-one’s-time death. Pieces. not just react to it. not just what they want. Honda pushed for great fuel economy. Old thinking is that we must give others what they want. Increasingly. even when they admit the organization is in deep decline—a high price to pay for comfort. that doesn’t mean it is the right thing for them to have or for us to help provide. I just can’t stop myself. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 29 We should offer customers what they could really use. one can choose success or failure. one owns the consequences of it. laws. New thinking is helping them by offering what they can really use. Parts. Thus we might address a symptom or part of the problem . Splinters. courses. Reality is not divided into disciplines. Stove pipes. agencies. or issues. But whatever the decision. knowingly or not. I am only a couple of years from retirement”? Again. Be ahead in a relationship. organizations are finding that doing what is right for our shared world might not be prized by their customers. For example. departments. policies. Fast foods can be slimmed down. despite initial customer resistance. “Why do I keep falling for the same kind of people… I always end up getting hurt”? Or have you ever heard a co-worker say. Is it easier to hurt (or kill) yourself than it is to change? Have you ever thought. The resistance to change is so strong that many people. The conventional way to look at problems is to see them as parts of the whole. and whole grains can be offered in grocery stores for the benefit of their customers’ health. sections. Be ahead of the market.14 (Or it is easier for us to get sick and even die than it is to change). It is a personal decision. It is easier to kill an organization than it is to change it. Just because the customer (or someone we care about) wants something. “I don’t know why I keep overeating. Have you ever heard someone say. not just react to it.Chapter 2.

etc. disaster might result anyway. without the right direction.30 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life instead of looking at the whole problem including its context. Focus on the whole before attempting to improve any part. acceptable learner performance. we tend to look at single issues: our weight. It is great insight: proactive. we know that the body is more than the sum of its parts. a constitutional amendment was passed limiting school class size only to find out later that doing so cut the heart out of the total state budget without any assurance that smaller classes really did lead to improved measurable learner performance. our exercise. if those improvements are not linked to adding value to the total organization and our shared society. For example. citizens vote to widen roads only to find that doing so increases traffic because the new wider lanes are more attractive when driving. . We know that weight reduction and diet don’t work as well unless we combine those with exercise. If we look at only the pieces by themselves without looking at the overall requirements for health and well-being. We do “strategic planning” for agencies. create it. we will likely fail in our self-improvement efforts. In our lives. We know it doesn’t. We know better. This powerful new reality is courtesy of management guru-of-gurus Peter Drucker. they select means before defining and justifying the ends. no matter how hard or cleverly we work on the parts. our age. In organizations. our diet. we emphasize each individual course and assume that passing those courses really adds to a competent and educated person. and practical. In colleges. Politicians and citizens alike tend to look at “issues” rather than first looking at the results they want to accomplish (no traffic jams. sections. In Florida. and units only to later realize that no matter how well we perform at each lower organizational level. we print organization charts and pretend that those really represent how the organization really works.) and end up with solutions-in-search-of-problems. departments. sensible. it might be like rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. If you can't predict the future.

We can define success in our personal and organizational lives. You must create your own happiness by acting happy. they cut back on marketing. For your future happiness and success. “Why should we be doing this in the first place?” Instead of just repeating today cheaper. but true. For example. or just react to change rather than create your own future. “What should we be delivering?” Should we . but the light bulb really has to want to change. all we have to do is to act in a way to create it and ignore the pushbacks. and they “hunker down” until the economic problem passes. during a recession. Want a great relationship with someone? Create it. don’t wait to be overtaken by changes. many organizations just cut back on everything: They let people go. first ask. Want to have a happy life? The late world-class psychotherapist Harold Greenwald’s advice to be happy is to simply act happy and happiness will surely follow. There is the old joke that goes: How many California therapists does it take to change a light bulb? Answer: Only one. Pause for a bit and think about this one and the power it might give you. We keep trying to improve the efficiency of what we now do and never ask. you really have to want to change. Those who tend to survive see—as do the Chinese who combine the symbols of “fear” and “opportunity” to spell out “threat”—that when everyone else is running for cover. faster. Funny. But change is up to you—just you and you alone. We are now getting better and better at doing that which should not be done at all. Want a better business? Create it. and better. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 31 This flies in the face of the conventional thinking that we have to predict the future (know of all those infernal futures studies or the Sunday supplement articles on what changes are in the air) and gives some simple advice: Create the future you want. This is vital. it might be the best time to invest in your future. This is another Peter Drucker insight.Chapter 2. Simple and powerful: Create the kind of life you want through your decisions to change.

then you will not be successful. All of the conventional business school dogma is about the basic driver of making a profit and adding value to shareholders: the quarterly Profit and Loss sheet. and often for good reason because most people use the results of evaluation for blaming. not blaming. But doing so is not enough. For years it was assumed that the business of business was business: that businesses make money and governments look after people. There are two “bottom lines” for every organization: societal and conventional. Stop.32 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life work harder at a personal relationship? Even if it is with the wrong person? Again simple and powerful advice for all of us. Evaluation is about improvement. Adding more bottom lines fragments the whole of societal value added. After all. don’t fix the blame. No longer. and anxiety. Remember. most people (especially politicians) want to assign the blame for what happened and don’t fix the problem. you are likely subtracting value. Learn from evaluation and decide what to change and what to keep. guilt. Remember previously profitable tires that ended up killing unsuspecting consumers? Remember profitable drugs that hurt people in the short run… but after terrific profits? Doing societal good and making money must not be mutually exclusive. I know. If you—in your personal life—and your organization are not adding value to our shared society. Fix the problem.15 Pay close attention to the aligning of both the conventional (quarterly profits) and societal bottom lines. Look at the wreckage . You must also add value to our shared society as well. Dumb. Evaluation should only attend to fixing and never to blame. On a personal level. if you are not adding value to society. Most people dread being evaluated. Making money and doing societal good must not be mutually exclusive. let’s fix problems and not fix the blame. When things go wrong. stop the blame.

be the only one who does what you do (so said Grateful Dead band leader Jerry Garcia). This is a basic principle. “If I am the solution. or as the saying goes. Why copy anyone else? Why benchmark others? Do you know anyone or any organization you want to be just like? Doubtful. Be the one and only and let other unthinking people benchmark you. Look at organizations that boosted short-term profits only to go out (or be put out) of business. Ask. What we decide to do delivers what happens to us. And for interpersonal relations. produce. Ask this question of your organization in order to focus on aligning what you use. punished others. what’s the problem?” (Or ask. “You reap what you sow. Which ones might you use? We are what we do… and accomplish. what’s the problem?”). and deliver to adding societal value. we want to be successful.Chapter 2. “If I am the solution to him/her. It allows us to take a hard and objective look at adding value to ourselves and others. All organizations are simply means to societal ends. and we must do it by adding value to all others. No.” Talk is cheap. ask. do. . We are what we accomplish. Continuing and Stable Realities That May Continue to Guide Us Following are some realities that still withstand the “test of time” and can continue to guide our decisions. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 33 of people who only looked after themselves and. Make sure you are a solution to an important problem. what’s the problem?” It will certainly focus you on adding value to others as well as yourself. thus. Don’t be the best of the best. “If my organization is the solution. Be unique. and being able to prove it. actions bring results. This simple question puts ourselves (as well as our organizations) into a useful context.

When deciding to change. we do routinely achieve more than is expected of us. While we naturally don’t set objectives for things that are obviously not achievable (such as jumping off of a building flapping our arms in an attempt to fly). there would be little worthwhile change. There is no fair wind for a rudderless ship. Purpose and direction are vital. you are very right and they are very scared.34 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life If we only set achievable objectives.16 We are powerful and we are at our best when we stretch beyond what is normally expected. we will forever be mired in yesterday. have the end point in mind: Where do you want to go. Some (including some of the so-called management experts) would say to never set objectives that we cannot achieve—don’t risk frustration by asking for more than we can deliver. or they didn’t think of it first. make sure the end point adds value to you and all others. Without direction. Successful sports coaches define leadership as getting people to accomplish what they would not have accomplished on their own. Some thought runners would never run a four-minute mile. even when the idea is good? When people criticize. Have you ever noticed that people resist change. Most people thought putting a man on the moon was folly (and some jerks still think we faked it). that it was unobtainable and only setting ourselves up for disaster. and why? And while you are at it. it usually means one of three things: they are right and you are wrong. The resistance to a new idea increases by the square of its importance. Decide to push yourself beyond the expected and safe. This is pretty limiting thinking. And some thought we could never eliminate polio or walk on the moon. If we only did what we knew we could deliver. and reach for success. Trust yourself. So said noted philosopher and mathematician Bertrand Russell. . you will not get to someplace useful. They were wrong. no matter how much assistance.

Opinion alone is likely to be bias and stereotypes in masquerade. Be careful of naked opinions. not just opinions. But once we know change is required—based on data—then going slowly will likely increase the pain. Data. and later in the book there will be some advice and tools on how to get that assurance. research results. . and promise. Sometimes the hardest thing you can get someone to do is change. Opinions are fine. but reject objections that are not based on data. but not to their own data.” We are also told to go slowly so that people can adjust— can get used to changing realities. and keen objective observations supply the basic information for making useful decisions. Get the facts. slowing down is not always good advice. But opinions not based on data and reality are just about emotions. Of course. Incrementalism is like pulling an impacted wisdom tooth slowly. Do you know any smokers who think that smoking will not harm them? As the late Australian management consultant Phil Hanford noted. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion. reality. A problem doesn’t cease to exist simply because one chooses to ignore it.Chapter 2. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 35 When you get resistance. they can open the door to mutual exploration. When change is required. for there is nothing more frightening than ignorance in action. “What’s real is real. be open to criticism. Be sure your new idea is useful and important.” Good advice. Have you ever known anyone who will not admit there is a problem? Many fatal heart attacks come from people choosing to ignore the deadly warnings. Many people would warn “we must crawl before we walk. not reduce it. we don’t want to rush into a solution before we know the problem as well as know that the problem is worth solving.

and what to discard.36 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life We can be the masters of change or the victims of it.” and on new realities. or throw yourself under the train. One researcher observed that the change that doesn’t get resistance must indeed be trivial. True friends help. they also have to be supported by leaders and followers alike. We can react to change and wait to see what happens to us. You decide. Being a smart decision maker involves knowing what to change. Figure out how to get them to join the adventure or figure out how to neutralize them. or we can be the masters of change and create the change we want. Others don’t. But the train is leaving the station…” In life. Look first and always at who benefits from any changes before buying in to resistance or the change. He stated. Master or victim of change: You decide. once having passed some major social reform legislation. what to modify. Resistance can come from unusual places. started getting resistance and foot dragging. things happen. what to keep. You can get on the train. Resistance is part of the human landscape. Not everything changes. All depends on our taking the risk to change in order to get different payoffs and different consequences. not old conventional and possibly just comfortable ones. not on “old news and ideas. Your decisions should be based on reality. stay on the platform. Don’t forget. And you harvest the consequences of your decisions. “The train is leaving the station. Good ideas don’t get successfully implemented simply because they are good.17 Look out for people who want to derail a new good idea. Good ideas can fail for the wrong reasons. . nor should everything change. A Florida governor. Some people want to sabotage new ideas for change because they might sense a reduction in their own power and safety. some change suggestions might really benefit all players.

This is based on proven performance improvement technology to identify needs as gaps in results. 2. and not means. And good decisions can get you toward happiness. Enron. This is not from Alice in Wonderland where “words mean anything I want them to mean. 2005). As of today. and Products. nothing more and nothing less. 2001. This will be clearly defined and justified later. Tyco. July 20.Chapter 2. WorldCom. will be defined and justified later. as well as Outcomes. Precision and accuracy are vital constituents in successful decision making. 3. Mega. A definition of “insanity” is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Micro. They are about ends. we should be proud of the good it has provided us in the past. Mega is the label of planning and results that add measurable value to external clients and society. Not all “conventional wisdom” is wrong or useless. by playing “follow the leader. 7. the late Ted Blau. As professor Dale Brethower suggests (Personal Communication. . and Andersen. And more are lined up to blindly follow old paradigms on their way to conventional and dusty death.” 5. Outputs. These terms. even in the aftermath of September 11. the people who said “all of the right things” but acted on personal greed are finding their ways to jail. No. not as gaps in wants or favored solutions. recognize the problems it might have also brought us. Past American Psychological Association president and psychotherapist. and be ready to change that which will bring us better payoffs.” or by not using these five key success factors. Macro. The Five Keys for Successful Decisions 37 Endnotes 1. 6. defined “happiness” as freedom from fear. I documented organization after organization that have run into hard times—or are heading that way— by being conventional. 4. it is not just more jargon. In my book Mega Planning.

One’s partner may be very important. (1968. We don’t want anyone killed or maimed by others doing them ill. 2002. the world is becoming economically flat. Resistance and adaptation to technological change: Some anthropological views. 12. 11. Wholes are made up of parts. 10. and groups are part of society. Your job is a part of what your organization delivers. Please stay with us. and the value added for all stakeholders is here— and growing. R. L. 16. This is shorthand for world marketplaces and commerce. Sorry to keep using this compound “personal and organizational success. 17. December). Clark & Estes. All of us. don’t kid ourselves. 15. No kidding. He has provided many for this book as well. for this insight. but your partner and you are part of a relationship. As author Tom Friedman points out (2005). And the relationship is part of your lives. and your organization is a part of domestic and likely international payoffs and consequences. Human Factors. We are capable of great and unexpected things. It focuses on the important distinction between the parts of a whole (systems) and the whole itself (a system). This might have been called “world peace. We are better than most of us think we are.” but that might seem too esoteric and blue-sky for some. and families are part of neighborhoods or groups. . Management expert Tom Peters is among other thoughtful people who suggest this. Beals. Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Western Michigan University. but it is not.38 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life 8. 9. My thanks to Dale Brethower. Changing paradigms to move from poor to good payoffs usually involves some discomfort. It might seem to be trivial semantics. 14. and your lives are part of families.” I suggest that these same principles can be used at work as well as in life. Again. 13.

This is basic. for useful decisions) for review so that we keep them all in mind: Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions: Becoming a Strategic Thinker* 1. Micro/Products) for decision making. as are all of the five. these five key decision factors are provided with the major topic of that chapter in bold. . means. as the underlying basis for planning. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. including tomorrow’s child. 4. Define “need” as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. or guides. Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega) of what kind of world. Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/Outcomes. There is another part to this key success factor: Know where you are headed and how to tell when you have arrived. and continuous improvement. Each of the key success factors is useful by itself. in measurable performance terms. and each works best when used with all of the others. Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how) and prepare all objectives to measure accomplishment. Here they are (recall this is one of the three templates.Chapter 3 Don’t Confuse What with How (or Ends are Not the Same As Means) Key Success Factor Two Here is the second successful decision-making key—still working with the first template—that if you choose to apply will help you be successful: Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how). we want for all of us. 5. 2. or methods). decision making. Macro/Outputs. *In each chapter. 3.

activities. We assume that managing will yield useful performance.40 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Let’s explore why sorting out the differences (and relationships) between ends and means is so important for you. while ends focus on results and consequences. Ends are the consequences of the means. most people first select means—the solution. We assume that training will result in useful performance (in spite of the reported data of Clark and Estes that less than 10 percent of what is mastered in training ever finds its way on to the job!). If you don't choose means on that basis. Means are only useful to the extent to which they deliver useful ends. what do you have in mind? In our world. Means are ways. Means speak to “how” something is to be done. We often confuse ends with means and what with how. then you are correct. they are results and payoffs. . Select those that are means and those that are ends by marking an X in the appropriate column. both financially and personally. ENDS ≠ MEANS1 and WHAT ≠ HOW The table on the next page shows some considerations we might encounter in everyday life. Notice how often we assume that a means will lead to an end. how-to-do-its. The most sensible way of choosing a means is on the basis of the ends you want to accomplish. methods: actions and processes. but only effective results-reference managing will deliver that. resources. None are ends. What did you observe in this table? If you indicated all are means (activities or processes). the how-to-do-its—and assume that useful ends will follow. This confusion can be destructive and expensive.

Chapter 3. Don’t Confuse What with How END (or What) Teaching Learning Pleasing Training Managing Supervising Dating Talking Helping Planning Thinking Intending MEANS (or How) 41 .

END (or What) Teaching Learning Pleasing Mastery Training Managing Competence Supervising Dating Happiness Talking Helping Survival Planning Self-sufficiency Thinking Intending Positive self-esteem MEANS (or How) . indicate with an X what you consider ends and means.42 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Let’s expand the list. Again.

activities. means are about methods. Ends are about results. You use means to deliver valuable ends. In . and resources. Don’t Confuse What with How Let’s compare notes: END (or What) Teaching Learning Pleasing Mastery Training Managing Competence Supervising Dating Happiness Talking Helping Survival Planning Self-sufficiency Thinking Intending Positive self-esteem X X X X X X X X X X X X X X X MEANS (or How) X X X 43 See the difference between ends and means? It is vital.Chapter 3.

44

30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life

making useful decisions, we should always—always—focus on the ends to be accomplished before we select the means—the how-to-do-its and resources. A tip: Just about every word in English that ends in an “ing” is a means (training, developing, planning, etc.). Dealing with Conflict or Misunderstandings: Switching the Dialog from Means to Ends. Interpersonal conflict—arguments and misunderstandings—are often over means (money, time, attention, habits) and not ends (staying within budget, feelings of acceptance, clean sink). The next time you have a conflict with another person, change the conversation from means to ends and consequences. Instead of talking about how another person does something, focus on the results and consequences. Below is a typical conversation between two people living in the same house: He: You always leave your hair in the sink and your shoes lying around. She: That’s just the way I am. So what? What does it hurt? He: We both have our habits, but let’s decide on the results we want and think if we might change our ways if we agree on those results. I’ll go first. I don’t want the sink clogging up every week and I don’t want to hurt my ankle ever again by tripping over shoes. She: Oh. So you’re not saying I’m selfish. Do I really leave that much hair in the sink? And is that why you had to put ice on your ankle last week? He: The maintenance crew showed me the long hairs they had to pull out, and yes, I did trip over your shoes in the dark. And it hurt. Will you consider taking a bit more care on these two things? Please?

Chapter 3. Don’t Confuse What with How

45

She: I think what you want is reasonable and I know I can change my habits. He: Whew, thanks. And below is a typical conversation between a manager and subordinate in the workplace: Boss: You are using the telephone too much. Cut back the time you are on that phone. Associate: I hear your concern. Let’s agree on what you want me to accomplish and then I can see if staying off the phone is what I should do or if there is something else operating. Boss: What are you talking about? Associate: My job is to schedule home repairs by the maintenance people working in our service department. We owe it to our customers to get the right work done, safely, on time, and within budget, right? Boss: Of course. Associate: If I am spending too much time on the phone, it should show up in lower customer satisfaction, wasted time of the maintenance people, and going over budget. Let’s check the records and see. (He gets the records from customer service.) It seems that I am a bit more efficient and effective than Shirley or Bob according to these records. Customers are satisfied, the maintenance people are working their shifts with no overtime, and no budgets for this have been busted. Do you agree?

46

30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Boss: I see that your results are pretty good. So? What’s your point?

Associate: Using the phone is my means—how I go about my job and getting the required results. I suggest that since my results are okay, that indicates my time on the telephone is probably okay as well. I realize that it’s hard to see productivity while I’m on the phone, but I hope you agree that I am getting the results you want from me. And of course, I am aware that the phone is to be used only for business, and I respect that. Boss: That seems reasonable. Thanks for the explanation. If you are thinking of a continuing relationship (such as a potential partner or boss), sit down and write down the objectives—the results that both agree are desired—and then have a conversation about the means or how to get those results. What happens when we focus on means and processes rather than ends and results? Trouble, that’s what. Losing Weight: A Case Study. Suppose we make the commitment to choose a new diet—one that allows us to eat all the fats and meats our little hearts desire. We launch the diet and for three days we are happy. The scale budges downward a bit, and we are delighted. We then keep going and the weight goes down some more. Hurray! After a week or so, we notice the scale moving up. Whoa. What is happening? It turns out that we had a few extra nibbles here and there, just a few things not on the diet. So what does that have to do with means and ends? Plenty. We chose the diet—a means—without being very clear about what results or ends the diet must bring. What ends are the focus of our diet?

In our day-to-day existence. and having a great life—ends—we jumped right into the solution: an attractive and likely faddish diet process. and the bank wanted everyone—everyone—trained on these core values. but with her university degrees. Elinor sat down with the leadership group that developed the core values and that was put in charge of designing the training. Elinor Gets a Work Assignment. but also wanted to balance work with personal life. It was to be on core values of associates working in her bank. Some days were better than others. and then choose the means. but it basically was the same list of core values. She was getting the picture. What about exercise? Timing of meals? Portion control? We should first focus on the results we want. The team checked online with a competing bank for their core values and they too were almost identical. Her supervisor told Elinor that Human Resources wanted a training program right away. She read the list that was developed with serious dedication and it looked familiar. Elinor’s job seemed pretty good. we have better success. Focused work teams derived these core values over the past seven months. Interesting. So familiar in fact that she checked with the core values of the computer manufacturing company she had worked with previously and found they were almost identical—a different word here and there. We should not choose the diet before our commitment about the desired results of a solution called a diet. Wrong choice. we are faced with choices among ends and means. Hmmm. She wanted to move ahead. Core values were almost the same for all organizations:2 All lists called for almost identical behaviors . and talked with them about the content of the course and why they thought it was important. she was ready to tackle some solid work and make solid contributions. When we choose means on the basis of the ends we want to accomplish.Chapter 3. Don’t Confuse What with How 47 Instead of a focus and decision about being slim and gorgeous (or handsome) and being in good health. living a long time.

Means. “Why don’t you simply make sure that Human Resources uses these core values as hiring criteria and that supervisors use them for mentoring and rewards. like Elinor did. such as training. When you ask them for their measurable criteria for success they scatter. but it was agreed that the “means” of training were not what was wanted but rather the “ends” of everyone demonstrating the core values on the job. diversity. then select the best means for getting the ends accomplished. “So why a training program?” If training is the solution. Watch what the politicians—public or those in your own life—do and say. safe retirement. that statement might be taking things too far. changes to social security. They will tell you about means (such as more funding. Even though our common language talks about things being intangible. no changes to social security) and try to get you to assume useful ends (such as longer life. Get them to define the ends that their suggested means will deliver and watch them mumble. and quality-focused. or just plain not measurable. honesty. That link is not automatic. Elinor pondered. and on a mathematical . Everything Is Measurable For some people. Elinor answered. considerate behavior. the truth is that they are. First define the ends desired and required. what results will that deliver? The sponsors responded with: because everyone in the bank must have these core values. earnest motivation.) and hope you elect them and support them with the promise of means. Everything measurable? Yes indeed. etc. respect for others. are often assumed to deliver worthy ends. what’s the problem? If training is successful. increased benefits. better facilities. or ethereal. lower accidents and injuries.48 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life and commitments. Politicians and Confusion of Ends and Means. and we can save all the costs of training?” It took some discussion. or insubstantial. including ethical behavior.

7. If you can’t name it. It simply ranks things in terms of greater-than.5 Next in reliability is the interval scale. less-than. we have measurement on an interval scale.6 We use this type of measurement in educational results reporting and social statistics. it is measurable.3 In fact. or equal.” But it is only one type of measurement out of four possibilities. and it will allow us to check our progress realistically. 8 So why all this fuss about measurability? Because it is vital. including yourself. We must set objectives in measurable performance terms (where are we headed and how will we know when we have arrived?). This also allows us to see that there is taxonomy— hierarchy—of results and the names for each: .4 The next most reliable scale of measurement is called ordinal scale measurement. if you can name it. The last scale of measurement is the ratio scale and is defined as when we have equal scale distances (such as the difference between 4 and 5 degrees) and a known zero point such as temperature in Kelvin where matter stops moving. Don’t Confuse What with How 49 scale of measurement. get away with the excuse that something is just not measurable. so don’t let anyone. or in distance. It will allow us to be accountable for the success we choose. and it is the one most of us think of when we hear “measurable. or in weight. When we have equal scale distances (such as the difference between 4 and 5 degrees) and an arbitrary zero point (temperature reported from the airport). third prize) and judging livestock. This type is used in judging art (first. then what is it? The scale of measurement for naming is termed nominal scale measurement. second. And everything is measurable.Chapter 3.

When Ed says I will leave nothing lying around—no pants. When Ed says he will improve his neatness. I will leave nothing lying around in the bedroom. and we will check this every Saturday. At work. Example: Ed Interval Objective Ratio Objective A goal states where you are headed (improve my love life. I agree to pick up my things more than I have previously. I will leave at least 50 percent fewer things lying around. It states where he is headed—the results he intends—but it isn’t precise enough for all to really be able to measure whether he is actually neater or not. get a better job. When Ed adds and there will be zero tardiness on my time cards. Nothing. we know he intends to be on time.50 Name of Scale of Measurement Nominal Ordinal 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Name of Purpose Goal Goal Be neat. and you will let me know if I have met our requirements of zero problems. underwear. or shoes—and you will confirm that. shirts. then he is saying both where he is headed and how both parties can tell when the objectives have (or have not) been accomplished—no stuff lying around where they should not be. then that is a goal. when Ed says I will be more punctual. but is unclear about criteria for accomplishment. It is intentional and says generally where his behavior is headed. then he has made this intention . socks. but there are no real criteria to measure the extent to which he has converted his intentions to accomplishments. etc.). Zero.

Each time anything is presented to you. Let's see. at least if you want to get beyond mediocrity. within two years get a new job that earns at least 23 percent more than my current job). If you don’t. marry my soul mate within one year. . A Guide to Aligning Ends and Means (and What with How) Getting ends and means distinguished and then related is quite straightforward. objective. Define the ends that any means (or resource) will deliver. 2. you will: 1. and check your progress. The more you can state your purpose in interval or ratio scale terms. Don’t Confuse What with How 51 into an objective: He has stated where he is headed and how to tell when he has arrived.Chapter 3. ask: “If this were successful. and measurable terms. with the answer to that. what would the result be?” And then. the more likely you are to be able to make useful decisions on how to get from here to there. again: “If this were successful. Does this rigor really make a difference? Does it make any sense to go to all of this trouble? You bet. what would the result be?” By repeating this question over and over again. An objective states both where you are headed as well as how to measure when you have arrived (for example. If you care enough about the consequences of a decision. then care enough to make sure you set your objectives in hard. guess what risk you are taking. 3. and thus Determine if it is worth doing. and Define the payoffs and consequences that any means and resource will deliver.

We could apply the same “chain of ‘why’ and ‘so what’ questions” to any situation. including personal ones. A: Q: A: Q: A: During this dialog. what would the result of that be? We would have a happier workforce—less conflict and more teamwork. new hiring. “To lose weight. Another Example from Everyday Life. If a dieter was asked. The results that were defined opened the door for another type of means. It opened the door for seeing if there were more efficient and effective ways of getting good results (such as at least 10 percent higher profits each year for at least ten years. supervising. there was a definition and justification for everyone acting on the basis of the core values. What would be the result of greater productivity? Higher profits for the bank and greater customer satisfaction. And if we had a happier workforce with less conflict and better teamwork. both individually and together. It turned out that instead of the expense of training everyone. etc. zero clients default on loans. “What would be the effect of choosing the diet you have selected?” he or she would probably answer. And the result of that? Financial safety and growth of assets for our customers and job security for our staff. what will the result of that be? Everyone would work better. one other than training.52 Q: A: Q: A: Q: 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life If training on core values is successful.” . what would the result of that be? Greater productivity. If everyone worked better individually and together.). and reward structures were cheaper and likely a lot better.

There are ends to be accomplished plus the criteria to measure your accomplishment. then the chain of considerations would lead to “be healthy and attractive. Mediocrity comes from selecting means without linking them to worthy ends.” That in turn would open up the consideration of alternative ways and means to get from the current appearance and health to the desired ones—alternative ways and means that would likely find a balance of exercise and sensible diet and changing one's eating and exercise habits and continuing them over time. . you are on your way to “getting to someplace else. and How to tell when you have arrived.” Here is some more detail about writing objectives. Sorting out the differences between ends and means and then relating them is a proven way to make useful decisions.” It is important for your decision making to precisely state: • • Where you are headed.Chapter 3. What a Useful Objective States. be they personal or organizational: • State in measurable terms where you are headed. isn’t it? But not many people take the time or risk9 to state these. Any objective that is useful simply states: • • Where you are headed. Don’t Confuse What with How 53 And asked why one wanted to lose weight. How to Prepare Useful Objectives As performance improvement pro Bob Mager tells us. If an objective doesn’t have both these elements. “If you don’t know where you are headed you might end up someplace else. Simply make sure that your decisions are based on ends and further that the ends you decide upon will deliver the payoffs you desire. Not just a quick-fix diet scheme. Sensible. and How to tell when you have arrived.

) State the conditions (time. and sort out means from ends. etc. sort out the differences between ends and means. means are about how best to get the ends delivered. Care enough about creating your future and decide to write precise objectives for yourself. environment. I will have good or better personal health as documented by my physician each year. Provide the exact criteria—ideally in interval or ratio scale terms—of how you know when you have arrived.) under which the accomplishment will be observed. Practical.54 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life • Identify who or what will demonstrate the accomplishment of that. place. Again. Precise. Measurable. and between what and how. (Note that any objective NEVER NEVER states how you will reach the desired end nor NEVER NEVER states what resources are to be used. . Rigorous. • • Objectives are about ends and accomplishments. Objectives provide you the sign posts along the way as you change from your current behaviors and payoffs to the desired ones. For example: I will have zero unexcused tardinesses or absences for the next year. Useful. Simple and powerful.

it is difficult to differentiate among organizations in terms of their statements of core values. 6. Hope ≠ Reality nor Money Spent ≠ Useful Results. 2. A fact doesn’t cease to exist simply because you chose to ignore it. Statistics for this are the same as for interval scale data. S. Yet. 5. . A static for this is rank order correlation. Also. This seems to be true. Don’t Confuse What with How 55 Endnotes 1. risk. His formulation is the basis of this section on “Everything Is Measurable. 7. Think about it—these are notorious cases of confusing ends and means. and you might not want to be accountable for delivering the results and consequences you commit to deliver.Chapter 3. Or our bank account as this is being written. there is accountability to that. 3. By the way. Stevens in 1951 wrote that there were four scales of measurement. whether you define them or someone else does it for (or to) you. Yes. A statistic for this includes means and standard deviations. but I am simply under-deposited. There are statistics for nominal scale results: Chi Square. and tools such as analysis of variance. 8. She is likely correct. results are there. Check it out yourself. 9. S. my wife tells me she is not overdrawn.” 4. If you state exactly where you are headed.

.

Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. in measurable performance terms. Produce. do. produce. 4. . including tomorrow’s child. What a coal plant in Australia discharges into the air has global effects. and continuous improvement. What you do in a personal relationship has consequences beyond yourself. we are going to think globally before we act locally. or methods). 2. knowledges. Macro/Outputs. and abilities for those critical and life-changing 30 seconds: Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions: Becoming a Strategic Thinker* 1. This new focus for everything we use. means. Like the others. Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega) of what kind of world. this is basic for building our skills. *In each chapter. What happens to a rain forest in Brazil has implications for us all. Now we will deal with a vital consideration in successful decisions—a major shift in paradigms. We are going to think really big. these five key decision factors are provided with the major topic of that chapter in bold.Chapter 4 Practical Dreaming: An Imperative Focus for Everything You Use. a major difference in our field of vision. we want for all of us. decision making. Define “need” as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/Outcomes. and deliver is highlighted in this first guide. 3. or world of concern. Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how) and prepare all objectives to measure accomplishment. Do. and Deliver All of us live in a shared world. 5. as the underlying basis for planning. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. Micro/Products) for decision making. This shared world is a huge system where all the parts work independently and together.

Doing so better ensures that we will add value to our shared world: to our world. In a holistic view (and can we afford anything smaller?). This alignment with a focus on societal value added is called Mega. The planet is a tender sphere. and move out of your comfort zone of conventional wisdom. We must focus first on the world in which we live. in which all of us live. you might be testing your real commitment to the first key factor: don’t rely on what others think. It is practical dreaming because it gives us a vital-yet-practical focus that allows us to align with adding value to ourselves and all others. and deliver with external impact. neighbors. produce. We often hear about environmentalists.58 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Again. deal with the importance of aligning everything we use. Let’s see. do. “greenies. so are our personal relationships. What we use. do. We will. and deliver has impacts beyond us—often far beyond ourselves. conservationists. So it is vital that we plan at each and every level of what we: Use ↓ Do ↓ Produce ↓ Deliver ↓ The Resulting External Impact This chapter is about this last item in our decision-making value chain: external impact—impact upon Mega. Often. do. or use.” and “tree huggers” who want to save the planet. produce. we focus beyond our day-to-day immediate concerns. They are not all wrong. It will be worth it. . our friends. in the next chapter. This also builds on the second key factor concerning ends and means.

do. But all the elements are vital. Key Success Factor Three: Mega and the Ideal Vision The third of the five key decision-making guides is to focus everything you use. There is a very tangible world outside of ourselves. produce. And they must be linked and aligned if we are to make useful decisions. do. and our immediate communities. Complex chain? Sure is. We have to align everything with our external partners in our shared world. Practical Dreaming 59 and others occupying planet Earth. do. together with others. Mega and an Ideal Vision are the same for all organizations in all societies. our organizations. This focus is invariably missing from almost all of the “big” strategic thinking and planning models and approaches. Mega Thinking and Planning—Vital Mega is the level of thinking and planning where the primary client of everything we use. want to create for tomorrow’s child. Mega defines an ideal vision—a “practical dream”—that is a measurable statement of the kind of world we. Really. Interestingly. Ignoring societal value added is the perfect prescription for mediocrity. But does it not make sense to align everything we use. produce.1 Mega planning starts and stops with society. and deliver is society—society now and in the future. It is also always missing from personal guidance and help books. very practical. and society—is a critical missing link in problem solving and decision making. Adding value to all is both challenging and very. The complete one is in the Appendix to this chapter. and deliver on adding measurable value to external clients and society: . clients. This is a short and incomplete definition of Mega. and deliver on adding value for ourselves and others in our external world—the world in which we all live? This Mega focus—adding measurable value to external partners.Chapter 4. produce.

precious metals. as the underlying basis for planning. in measurable performance terms. Either we are moving toward Mega or not. or jewels) are used and understood in every culture. agency. beads. for each person minimally.60 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega) of what kind of world. ¥. or control of another person. we want for all of us. or substance. And what might be more important than everyone surviving and being (or becoming) self-sufficient and selfreliant. £. A metric for this is money (such as €. Let's look at Mega: what it is and why it is vital for you to focus on in your decision making. Money or other tokens of exchange (such as shells. their consumption will be equal to or less than their production: C ≤ P where C = Consumption and P = Production. The Mega level of planning and decision making is centered on the kind of world we want to help create for tomorrow’s child: no one will be under the care. custody. Additionally. An indicator of self-sufficiency is that. produce. or other currencies): C is anything you spend money for and P is anything you get money for. $. the ideal vision and Mega are really practical dreaming:3 dreaming because we intend to create a better . Each person will earn at least as much as it takes for them to survive unless they are moving toward being self-sufficient and self-reliant. A bit crass? Not really. and deliver has measurable impact on that shared destination. and continuous improvement. people put money (or their tokens of value exchange) toward what they find important. do. including tomorrow’s child. In reality. decision making. What we use.2 Mega. The unfortunate and unlucky among us will be supported only as long as they are moving toward self-sufficiency.

Chapter 4. Practical Dreaming

61

future for ourselves and others (move from what is to what could be) and practical because we all really rely on the good intentions and the worthy actions of each other. Making money and living our own personal lives must not be mutually exclusive from adding value to our shared world. How about some examples—just a few—of Mega or practical dreaming:

Nothing I use, do, or produce will bring any physical harm to others. (For example when I operate a car, I will not do permanent damage to others, and at my work, I will not produce anything that will physically harm another person.) My relationships with others will make them safe and happy, and improve their quality of life. In my work and in my home, I will not pollute and thus permanently degrade or make non-renewable our shared environment.

• •

Some Possible Implications for Personal Decisions. You go to meet a friend at a corner coffee shop. She tells you that she is very tight for money—very tight. She doesn't have the money to pay her rent this month and she is desperate. She asks if you will loan her some money, and you tell her quite frankly that you are close to the same situation and don't have anything to provide. She thinks for a moment. “I know you manage the emergency health support fund at the office. How about taking out a loan for a month and then we can pay it back as soon as I get some money that is coming in? Nobody will require that money. They haven’t dipped into that fund in three years, so it would be safe.” She is a very good friend. What to do? You know what she’s suggesting is illegal and even unethical. It isn’t your money, but your friend is in trouble. You also know that there is a very slight probability that the fund would have to be used for someone’s survival—someone in deep trouble. But that is just a slight probability.

62

30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life

All you have to do to decide is ask, “Will my temporarily taking money from the fund take all of us closer or further away from Mega?” Easy, isn’t it? No one but your friend would have any benefit (and that is doubtful since it might be like giving a drug addict one more “hit” to get them to quit), and it is possible that the missing funds might have a very negative impact on the health, survival, and well-being of someone else. An Example from the World of Work. Suppose the scene shifts, and you are working for an organization that is developing training programs for a defense contractor. Your supervisor tells you that the materials have to be delivered Monday. You know that the complete data on operational safety is not yet available. Your supervisor says, “A deadline is a deadline!” You make your case and it is rejected. What do you do? Send the materials that might endanger lives or go over the head of your supervisor as far as you have to in order to make sure safety will be ensured? This is a tough decision for many. They don’t want to lose their jobs and get in trouble with the boss, and after all, you were told to do it. On the other hand, safety might be sacrificed. By asking “Will this take us closer or further away from Mega?” the decision becomes clear: Don't deliver it incomplete. This is a risky choice, but there is more risk if there were safety problems—even deaths or disabilities—and it got tracked back to you, which it probably would for the supervisor would probably lose all memory. Several options—means or processes—can be considered: 1. 2. Tell the supervisor to send it in with his or her signature. Ask your supervisor to go above both of you and discuss the problem and implications. If this is refused, tell the supervisor that you would like her to sign a release. Send in the materials with a note concerning the incomplete nature of the materials in terms of safety.

3.

Chapter 4. Practical Dreaming 4.

63

Refuse to send in the materials in their current form and let the supervisor take whatever action he feels is required. Quit.

5.

These are tough choices. It is easier to go along, but that takes everyone further away from Mega. While these choices are initially tougher, in the medium run, everyone will benefit. One pushback that is often offered is “Why should we focus on Mega when no one else does?” And as a companion to such a pushback is “What I do won’t make any difference; I’m just one voice drowned out in all of the others.” First of all, more and more organizations are finding that a focus on Mega is both practical and ethical. It is slow, but it is happening. Second, if you don’t focus on Mega—even if you feel lonely— what about the ethics of your decision? Mega is both practical and ethical. We often just don’t recognize how much we already work within the “social contract” where we commit to do no harm to ourselves and others. Criminals, self-seeking people, thugs, and terrorists have no use for the social contract or Mega. That must and will change. Mega level results—societal added results and consequences—are outside of you, your family, and social circle, as well as your organization. Starting with that societal focus will best ensure that your en-route decisions will add value up the value chain.

The Ideal Vision: Mega
Much of current thinking and advice talks about visioning: defining what you want to create. In short-sighted versions of visioning, a suggested method is to write a vision for yourself or just for your organization. Not a good idea. Doing so will likely isolate you and your decisions from the external reality of society: It is conventional, comfortable, and counterproductive. An ideal vision states what tomorrow’s society looks like in measurable performance terms. Thus, the ideal vision is the

it is for each and all of us. By adopting the ideal vision. If we are not adding value to our shared world—to the ideal vision—what do we have in mind? Subtracting value? Using the ideal vision for our decision making gives us orientation and context for everything we use. quick. produce. Adding value to our shared society is practical. It is a commitment to a social contract where we do no harm to ourselves and others. Focusing on Mega and using the ideal vision is simple and practical. you are likely subtracting value from them. and accomplish. do we owe others any less?5 . We all depend on others focusing on Mega when they deal with us. however. we simply decide what pieces and parts of it we commit to contributing.64 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life same for all people and for all organizations. but it is evolving. In daily life. You decide. this question and the answers will be invaluable in making useful decisions. Will it take you closer or further away from useful outcomes? Simple.4 Consider any decision you make in your life. it will also bring rewards. It won’t be for long. even conventional business is realizing that making money and doing societal good must not be mutually exclusive. It is. Mega Thinking and Planning Applied to Your Personal Life as well as to Organizations. Adding value to others is not just for organization. Increasingly. All of us are means to societal ends (ever wonder what your place in the world is?) by adding value to each other and our shared world. If you are not adding value to others. do. It will not only provide the role model for others based on your behavior. It is a vehicle that will move you away from mediocrity. A primary focus on Mega is both practical and ethical. act to add value to those around you as well as to yourself. contrary to accepted current practice (and old paradigm thinking). It is not yet the norm. and very helpful: Will this take us closer or further away from Mega? If you are objective. back to you. and vital. both personal and external. realistic.

So this appendix provides some greater detail to this focus—system focus— called Mega.6 . Comprehensive Definition of Mega. Without formally recognizing the fact. check if you and/or your organization currently make a contribution to that element and thus to the ideal vision. You have already reviewed the short version that provides a quick decision guide: Will what I decide and do take me closer or further away from Mega? For those who want more detail. note that you are already working at the Mega level. It is the basis for an ideal vision that defines the kind of world we want to help create. Look this list over and identify if you (and/or your organization) are making a direct contribution to each element or making a contribution in partnership with others. Practical Dreaming 65 Appendix to Chapter 4 Our commitment to you was not to take the dialog to a more complex level that most would find useful. For each of the basic components of an ideal vision. following is a comprehensive definition of Mega: the planning and thinking level where the primary client and beneficiary is society now and in the future. create for ourselves and tomorrow’s child.Chapter 4. As you review the definition. all organizations impact external clients and society. On the following page is a further definition of Mega. It is provided as a checklist using the elements of Mega—of the ideal vision.

rape. including (but not limited to): War and/or riot and/or terrorism MAKES A CONTRIBUTION Direct Indirect or with Others None Unintended human-caused changes to the environment. survival. and quality of life from any source. or destruction to property Substance abuse 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Disease (continued) . or crimes of violence. robbery.66 Basic Ideal Vision Elements: There will be no losses of life nor elimination or reduction of levels of well-being. self-sufficiency. including permanent destruction of the environment and/or rendering it non-renewable Murder.

race. home.Chapter 4. including transportation. Practical Dreaming Basic Ideal Vision Elements Direct MAKES A CONTRIBUTION Indirect or with Others None Starvation and/or malnutrition Destructive behavior (abuse) of child. (continued) 67 . elder. national origin. creed. spouse. religion. partner. and others Accidents. self. location Poverty will not exist. age. and every woman and man will earn at least as much as it costs them to live unless they are progressing toward being self-sufficient and self-reliant. and business/workplace Discrimination based on irrelevant variables including color. sex.

agency. or control of another person. do.68 Basic Ideal Vision Elements No adult will be under the care. or substance: all adult citizens will be self-sufficient and self-reliant as minimally indicated by their consumption being equal to or less than their production. Consequences of the Basic Ideal Vision: Any and all organizations—public and private—will contribute to the achievement and maintenance of this basic ideal vision and will be funded and continued to the extent to which it meets its objectives and the basic ideal vision is accomplished and maintained. and contribute and thus will not contribute to the reduction of any of the results identified in this basic ideal vision. custody. People will be responsible for what they use. 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life .

” And the facts of societal impact and consequences are all in terms of deviations.Chapter 4. 3. 2. it is based on consensus. Just look at daily crime and environmental reports. but it is also the ethical thing to do. not on arbitrary power. Practical Dreaming 69 If you recycle. but my attempts and challenges to others to come up with some rigorous positive criteria for Mega all have fallen short. in his important work. and robbery. It was seen as useful enough for management expert Wess Roberts to use. Keep track for yourself. This is a term I am re-introducing from earlier writings. Except for the extremists (who have a means in central focus and pretend that is the end). but rather derived and defined by our neighbors far and wide. It is not only practical to add value to others. get the facts. It is stable and universal. It is interesting that Mega thinking and doing is ethical. In the Appendix to this chapter (pages 65–68). if you are a “good neighbor” personally or organizationally. all agree on this definition. Some people viewing the indicators are initially put off by the criteria for Mega being negative. . We have taken the initiative to ask people from almost around the globe to define the kind of world they want for tomorrow’s child. you are already working to deliver results and consequences at the Mega level. I don’t like it either. we keep score in our society in terms of breakdowns. with attribution. As Professor Dale Brethower notes. And being ethical—thinking and acting Mega—is also the safest and most practical way to act. 4. Please consider it. there is a more detailed definition of Mega and the ideal vision. Endnotes 1. This definition of an ideal vision is not imposed. Think and act Mega in your personal as well as your work lives. if you prevent murder. You can tell when you are adding value to our shared world. rape. “If you care. Most people don’t realize the extent to which they can add or subtract value to our shared world.

London: May 28. R. Rather. E. but the concept of personal and organizational responsibility for adding societal value is recently getting increased support. D. (1969). Corrigan. 3: 151–157. Journal of Socio-Economic Planning Sciences. I. A. Consider these as more than just individual isolated variables.70 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life 5. & Johnson.. My first published plea for a primary focus on societal value added was Kaufman. see them as forming a fabric where parts interweave. Issue 8428. 375. The article by the world-wide practice director for McKinsey and Company that urges societal corporate responsibility is Davis. May 26). The Economist. Toward educational responsiveness to society’s needs: A tentative utility model. 2005. The biggest contract. p. . R. This is based on Kaufman. It has been lonely. 6. I have been urging Mega for some time. 87. 1998 and 2000. W. (2005. Vol..

Let’s start defining and aligning the piece of this value chain that will provide you the pathway and tools for successful decisions. Planning for future consequences and payoffs is central to move from mediocrity to success: Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/ Outcomes. Key Success Factor Four This key factor is about aligning your decisions with larger consequences. and deliver to results and consequences outside of ourselves: our organizations (and families). Let’s see how to relate your decisions to future consequences. perhaps an important one. Our decisions should deliver the future we want. There is a value chain that links everything we use. Macro/Outputs. making a commitment to buy a car that turned out to fail inspection or have bad brakes that caused you to have an accident? . produce. And sometimes the consequences are different from what we expected or assumed they would be. The “big five” key success factors for making successful decisions from the first template are shown in the table on the next page. This still might seem to be a stretch. It is important to align our planning and actions with desired future payoffs. do. and later found out that it led to unexpected or bad consequences? For example.Chapter 5 Aligning Results and Consequences: The Decision Success Model Story Every decision we make now has later consequences. society. but please stay with it. Linking the Now and the Future Have you ever made a decision. Micro/Products) for decision making. and the communities in which we all live.

No one can count on luck all the time. 4. Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega) of what kind of world. “You can pay me now. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. and to “let the chips fall where they may. in measurable performance terms. create it. to be spontaneous. Define “need” as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. there was a TV ad with a grubby mechanic—grease smeared on his face. And it seems as if predicting the future is difficult at best. Macro/Outputs. An oil filter is a lot cheaper than an engine overhaul. It is much easier (and often more fun) to act on the spur of the moment. decision making. Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/ Outcomes. 2. Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how) and prepare all objectives to measure accomplishment. So here is how to create your future. or methods). sporting a five-day growth of beard. Paraphrasing an old axiom: an ounce of sensible planning is worth a pound of mediocrity. Micro/Products) for decision making. And so it is in life. *In each chapter. stained hat. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. these five key decision factors are provided with the major topic of that chapter in bold. He says. 5.” Doing that is .1 Planning for the future is indeed inconvenient. 3. A few years ago. So let's take Peter Drucker’s advice: If you can’t predict the future. cigar nested in the corner of his mouth—holding an oil filter.72 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions: Becoming a Strategic Thinker* 1. and continuous improvement.” Good advice. or you can pay me later. we want for all of us. means. including tomorrow’s child. Critical Statements That Must Be Formally Presented and Responded to—Aligning Today and Tomorrow. as the underlying basis for planning.

3. Now we’ll discuss the second of the three templates. measurable. 4. I commit to select and use efficient tools. or our relationships. These are not decisions that will likely shape our lives. I commit to add value to our shared world and community. 2. I commit to evaluate the results I get and use that data to continuously improve what I use.Chapter 5. and deliver. Most other decisions do have future implications. including the impact and consequences of the results. produce. . 6. Aligning Results and Consequences 73 fine if you don’t care about the consequences of your decisions. I commit to add value to my organization and/or family. and human—to get the results identified above (1. For example. we might (with some trepidation) throw caution to the wind and ride a roller coaster (which in our gut we know is safe) or take a first airplane trip (also known to be much safer than travel by automobile). Template Number Two: The DSM The Decision Success Model (DSM) below has basic statements that must be stated in rigorous. financial. and performance terms. methods. do. Making those decisions are best done with a keen and objective eye on the future we want to create. 5. or guides. I commit to select useful resources—including physical. if we are to continue our trip from mediocrity to success: Decision Success Model (DSM) 1. and 3). 2. and 3). 2. I commit to add value to my immediate associates at work (and/or close friends). for decision making. our jobs. and means to accomplish the above (1.

I commit to add value to our shared world and community. and decision making are all equally important. The first three DSM statements relate to three levels of planning and three levels of results. Some of the words sound a bit strange? Let’s make sure we agree on what each means: Add value: Value is what accomplishes something that is both useful and what we want. such as you. but about impact that is worthwhile. 3. Please notice that DSM statements 1. the whole chain of results starts fragmenting. I commit to add value to my organization and/or family. This level of planning is called Micro. and Deliver. is not about price. and ask which one (or more) you think you can afford not to address formally. When we commit to add value to our shared world and community. that might mean . 2. The differences-yet-relations between ends and means that we first provided in Chapter 3 resurface! Aligning What We Use. 2. and rigorously. Produce. Each is critical. This commitment focuses on your social circle or large group. and co-workers. planning. I commit to add value to my immediate associates at work (as well as close friends). If you “fake” one or more. DSM statements 4 and 5 are about means (including resources).74 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life All of these statements and levels of thinking. This commitment focuses on individuals. Each must be aligned and linked to all others. This level of planning is called Macro. measurably. and 3 relate to ends. Review them again. as used here. Society. Let’s take a look at these and introduce some new terms: 1. This level of planning is called Mega. significant others. if you omit the formal consideration of any one. Do. such as family or the organization for which you work. Value. This commitment focuses on our shared world—the place we all live.

Chapter 5. a society. social club. measurably. government agency. Here is a framework for relating planning and useful results. We plan so that our decisions can add value to ourselves and others. we do what we say we will do and deliver. We all should be—and depend on—being good neighbors. lots of labels. a country. Shared world and community: We all live among others. Of course. If we don’t add to the survival and self-sufficiency of ourselves and others. they wouldn’t be here if they were not important—troublesome at first perhaps. and wellbeing and at least not harm others. Recall in Chapter 3 we reviewed why everything is measurable and why it is vital to be precise. but important. health. or political party—or a family or living unit. When we plan. along with the labels for your decisionmaking toolkit: lots of words. and rigorously—none of the not-quite-measurable objectives stuff. Formally: This means doing it precisely. rigorous. Commit: This simply means that we will do and deliver as we agreed. Getting beyond mediocrity requires us to think and act with sharp purpose and rigor. Organization: This is any formal group—such as a company. we plan for defining and delivering useful results. Let’s care enough about our future to be precise about defining and achieving it. a world. a community. Aligning Results and Consequences 75 that we will make a contribution to safety. and measurable. We live in an apartment complex. a neighborhood. Adding value is about positive consequences. We share those. we might be subtracting value. This is for real. .

developing. Activities. report completed. continued success. doing. staff. applying. meeting. handbook. means. Friends. What we deliver outside of ourselves: completed report. etc. methods. software that meets standards. graduation. marriage. Building-block results: course completed. safety of people and things. finances. laws. buildings. no fatalities. no killings. associates. etc. etc. fender. discharge from hospital. delivered medicine. no species go unnaturally extinct. continued happiness. college degree. teaming. etc. Improve Use 5 Do 4 Processes Produce 3 Micro Deliver 2 Macro External Impact 1 Mega . existing ways and means of doing things. etc. etc. delivered service. trying. equipment. Continued health and wellbeing.76 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Levels of Planning and Related Levels of Results2 Label DSM Statement 6 Planning Level Evaluation & Continual Improvement Inputs Examples Find out what works and what doesn’t and make appropriate changes. learn from experience. meet with someone.

and activities? (PROCESSES) Do you commit to create and ensure the quality and appropriateness of the human. friends. and physical resources available? (INPUTS) And not part of proactive planning but the “engine” of continuous improvement is this question: Do you commit to deliver results. external associates. methods. projects. Each of these factors must be precisely dealt with and defined. and clients (including society)? (MEGA) Do you commit to deliver personal and/or organizational contributions that have the quality required by your external partners? (MACRO) Do you commit to produce internal results that have the quality required by your internal partners? (MICRO) Do You Commit: Yes No Do you commit to have efficient internal products. Aligning Results and Consequences 77 Here are a set of direction-finding questions to help you set and agree on the directions you and your organization will move and deliver. and procedures that have positive value and worth defined by your objectives? (Evaluation and Continuous Improvement) These form the Decision-Making Success (DMS) Factors. capital. citizens. as well as aligned. activities. Finding Direction: Decision-Making Success (DSM) Factors Questions All Individuals and Organizations Must Ask and Answer Do you commit to deliver personal and/or organizational contributions that add value for your family.Chapter 5. . programs.

Society. associates. Why is that so important? Do we really have to formally and rigorously include that consideration in our decision making? Why can’t I look after me and let everyone else (or the government) look after others? If we don’t intend to add value personally and organizationally to our shared society. You. a focus and formal concern for societal value added.3 The Mega focus that we defined in Chapter 4 is a primary and unique feature of this suggested approach to success— success in your life and making a contribution to your friends. and precisely? The answers to these questions should provide you with a good blueprint for changing how you make decisions and the data you collect to do so. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. our shared world (including our family and friends).78 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Which ones of these do you think you and your associates (personal and/or organizational) can afford not to deal with formally. Community. Mega. what do we have in mind? Do we intend to subtract value from our shared world? Do we state indifference or powerlessness? Victimhood? Do we want others to act without regard to us? This takes us back to the first key decision-making success factor for useful decisions: Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. measurably. or even suggest. organization.” . and precisely (ideally on an interval or ratio scale)? Which ones are you not now currently dealing with formally. rigorously. Because most current thinking does not formally consider. rigorously. measurably. and society. The decision aid is quite basic: Will what I decide and do bring me closer or further away from Mega. does this mean we cannot really add value to society? Does it really mean that because we haven’t done so in the past we should not do so now? Can I really do something to add value to society? Little me? The answer is a very firm “Yes. and Success Perhaps the most initially uncomfortable consideration we provide is Mega.

who? If not now. a useful Mega-focused question to keep in mind was provided by U.Chapter 5. even if the difference is small and is combined with the contributions of others. In fact. safety. restaurants. auto mechanics. Even if doing so at first gets us out of our old and no longer responsive comfort zones. and service people. on societal value added. If we don’t recycle. we will likely diminish the quality of life in our world and run out of resources. Each of us must act in a way so as not to bring harm to ourselves and others.S. Why should we expect Mega from everyone else and not provide it ourselves? Ethics. Sure a little litter or pollution here and there doesn’t seem to matter. If we don’t each make sure we don’t pollute. We depend on each other. operating an unsafe vehicle. not making certain that what we produce is safe. not a firm guide to how we think and act in the future. Ask what you can do for your country. but it does. . The past is prologue. not washing our hands while working in a restaurant. dentists. then harm will likely come: driving drunk. everyone suffers. when?” He also focused on Mega contributions when he challenged his fellow citizens to “Ask not what your country can do for you. If we fail to do this. or we all suffer.” We all depend on others to make Mega primary on their list as we deal with them regularly: airlines. We can make a difference. Kennedy who asked “If not us. Each of us has a continuing role for adding value to our shared world. President John F. then we discount the health. manufacturers. If we don’t clean up our messes or stop the messes before they begin. grocery stores. Deliver Mega to all you work with and to yourself as well. physicians. and well-being of others. We all must have a firm and continuing focus on Mega. Aligning Results and Consequences 79 We are all more powerful and more potent than we imagine. Each little bit adds up.

and the high-flying dot. This limitation is self-defeating. When working for an organization. If an organization is not adding value to society. including the family. and produce has to be targeted and integrated toward adding value to the organization’s contribution to our shared world. And there were more who took themselves (and a few insiders) as the primary client and beneficiary. operate in a societal context. it will surely have an uncertain future. WorldCom. So. this level would be graduation or getting a certificate of competence.coms. This puts individual actions and results in perspective. do. Think for a moment about all of the “smart” fast-track organizations that faltered or even failed in the early 2000s: Andersen. everything we use. for instance. and deliver have impact as well as consequences. How can that be true? Don’t most business schools and management consultants talk about the organization as the primary client and beneficiary of “strategic” planning? Yes. Enron. They denied or ignored their societal responsibilities. Organizations (and families) are means to societal ends. They talk about “the business case”: quarterly profits. Tyco. a family gift to charity. produce. Everything must add value to what can be delivered. If we are attending a school.80 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Organization and Family Accomplishments— Next Link in the Value Chain The next link in our value chain is what we can and do deliver outside of ourselves: I commit to add value to my organization and family. etc. Organization planners have been known to start and stop here at the point of adding value. and they are shortsighted when they limit themselves to the quarterly Profit and Loss sheet. do. doing the business of the corporation. What they use. All organizations. . a professional service. muttering “all the right words” while doing destructive things. or the support of a child for higher education. HIH. these will be your Macro-level results that might be a completed and qualityapproved motorcar. What we deliver outside of ourselves has to add value externally.

Don’t forget that with that degree. What about these building-block results? The statement that goes with that is: I commit to add value to my immediate associates at work (and/or close friends). Remember this as you make decisions. terrorists. thieves. All organizations are means to societal ends—means to Mega. Aligning Results and Consequences 81 What about the family next door that builds an addition that blocks our view or access. and scam artists? Are you planning your future and have your sites set on graduating college? Great. . Good neighbors? Not quite. All building-block results are way stations en route to adding societal value. Ask yourself “Will this take me closer or further away from Mega.Chapter 5. Individual Accomplishments: The Building Blocks of Success Big accomplishments are built from small deeds—from Micro level results. The last person you should attempt to fool is yourself. Macro is an en route value chain stop on the way to Mega. you are objective. and only if. As you plan your life. and as you make decisions. Little accomplishments build value toward larger accomplishments: Micro-Level Accomplishments Macro-Level Accomplishments Mega-Level Accomplishments This is the path of a value chain for results. and in addition. For you that accomplishment will be at the Macro level. keep in mind the two levels of linked planning: Mega and Macro. you have to find a way to add value to society and community at the Mega level. All roads and results lead to Mega.” This will be quick and effective if. they dump building scraps in a vacant lot. What about families of looters.

82 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life When we operate on a day-to-day basis. If we just do what others are doing. and deliver should add measurable value to our shared world—to each other. Decisions. But that is your decision. Drive to work or take a bus? Come to work on time or sleep a few more minutes? Turn in our first draft or polish it until we think it is just right. Should they? Yes. Everything we use. we are making decisions all the time. it makes sense. produce. How do you make these daily decisions? We can make every one on the basis of the commitment to add value to my immediate associate. If we do “what’s right. decisions. and add some value to our shared world. Turn in a slightly inflated expense report or do it to the letter of the law. no. Everyone should do it. Putting All the Pieces Together What does all of this look like? The relationship among the results of planning and doing are outlined in the following table: . Will that add value to my immediate associates? And will that add value to my organization? And will that add value to external clients and society? These questions about decisions in the value chain form the Micro-level to Mega-level chain illustrated earlier: Micro-Level Accomplishments Macro-Level Accomplishments Mega-Level Accomplishments When you think about it for a moment.” then we can sleep better at night. including family and friends. set a role model for others. do. But does everyone do it now? Sadly. we harvest the consequences of that decision. Call him for coffee or wait for his call.

and 3). including the impact and consequences of the results. and means to accomplish the above (1. Primary Target Society and community The organization itself Individuals DSM Name Mega Macro 83 Micro Activities. 3. financial. 2. I commit to add value to our shared world and community. 2. do. I commit to select and use efficient tools. I commit to select useful resources—including physical. Aligning Results and Consequences Decision Success Model (DSM) and Its Relationships and Alignments Decision Element 1. and 3). I commit to add value to my immediate associates at work (and/or close friends). produce. I commit to add value to my organization and family. projects. I commit to evaluate the results I get and use that data to continuously improve what I use. and deliver.Chapter 5. and human—to get the results identified above (1. Inputs All Evaluation and Continual Improvement . 2. 6. 4. programs. interventions— means Resources Processes 5. methods.

Change. Consequences. What we decide has impacts and consequences. Choices. Slow down! Isn’t this getting a bit heavy? Could be. It is worth your careful consideration in terms of what you will achieve if you understand and use this as compared to keep on doing what you always have been doing with the payoffs you are now getting. which is applicable to the rest of the DSM: Inputs Evaluation and continual improvement Inputs and ingredients (not results) Of all DSM elements Why is all of this important? Easy: All of these are critical elements and considerations when you make decisions— decisions at work and decisions in life.84 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life The Value Chain Again: Linking Planning and Results Before we leave this part of our “success quest.” let’s make sure we understand the value chain and its parts and pieces related to ends and accomplishments: DSM Element Mega Macro Micro Name of Primary Client and Beneficiary Shared society Our organization/our family or living group Our co-workers/friends And these planning levels and results guide what we do and use. .

Modify it for your personal life. dithers or defers. but it doesn’t do a thing for you over time. but usually don’t change much of the resulting consequences. Appendix to Chapter 5 Complete the Decision-making Agreement Table to help you and others link everything that is used. Making useful decisions requires a lot of precision and rigor. done. That’s a promise. When you get back (if you do take a breather). So take a breath and maybe take a walk.” The responses to these statements should provide you with a good blueprint for changing how you make decisions and the data you collect to do so. It really prepares you for those amazing 30 seconds. that is fine. Come on back when you are ready and we will continue our journey away from mediocrity to success. in the next chapter we will explore the means and resources required in successful decision making and how to decide what to use and do. produced. Quick fixes in life are often like putting Band-Aids on brain tumors: symptomatic relief. and this is not one. although the one below is designed primarily for use in organizations. Just have them initial under “No. So let’s make sure we deal with the basic problems and opportunities. for any reason. Aligning Results and Consequences 85 You weren’t promised a quick fix. have each person formally commit to each with their signature or initials. as well as learning some new things. and not with just the symptoms. But mastering and internalizing it will lead you to make decisions for your success. Aren’t you and your success worth the effort? From time to time. If someone. .” Otherwise. You can use this for both yourself and others with whom you relate and work. There is no waffling allowed: either in or out. And sometimes quick fixes can make things worse. sign under “Yes. Research shows us that quick fixes often feel good at first. what is presented might be out of your comfort zone.Chapter 5. and delivered with external consequences. When applying this.

” you may soon see that you are operating on the basis of old ways of thinking and acting. When the book talks to you. Using it can be helpful to you and all others in your personal and organizational life. One note on the wording in this agreement table: This book attempts to relate to both you and your everyday life as well as to your working and organizational life. it helps you challenge your normal and comfortable ways of dealing with change. We add both into our suggestions. . and this can be seen in the statements below. As you go through the statements and are responding “No. and because it requires formal commitment to each statement.86 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Because of the order and nature of the statements in this agreement table. what it is saying can (and should) be applied to any organization in which you work.

Each personal and organizational operation function will have objectives that contribute to #1 and #2. The results of #5 may recommend nonHRD training interventions. #2. and my total organization will contribute to the survival. 2. Myself. 7. #3. and #3. 6. clients. Aligning Results and Consequences 87 Commitment Me Y N Others Y N Strategic Thinking and Planning Agreement Table 1. A needs assessment will identify and document any gaps in results at the operational levels of #1. Evaluation and continual improvement will compare results with objectives for #1. clients. my associates. Myself. Human resources/training and/or operations requirements will be based on the needs identified and selected in #5. my associates. health. #3. 4. 3. and well-being of others. Each job/task will have objectives that contribute to #1. and #4. and #4. #2. and society. 8. and society.Chapter 5. 5. #2. . and my total organization will contribute to the quality of life of others.

88

30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life

Endnotes
1. In my other work, I call the questions that every organization must (1) ask, (2) answer, and (3) align The Organizational Elements Model (OEM). I have modified these for this book under the title Decision Success Model (DSM) to emphasize that all decisions ultimately come down to individual ones. 2. In earlier works, I urged that results at the three levels of planning have distinct labels. I still suggest it is important for organizational improvement work and that lumping all results into one label (usually “outcomes”) blurs the levels and the importance of distinguishing among them and linking them. If you will apply this in your organizational world of strategic planning and thinking, I suggested this formulation:
Decision Element 1. I commit to add value to our shared world and community. 2. I commit to add value to my organization and family. 3. I commit to add value to my immediate associates at work (and/or close friends). 4. I commit to select and use efficient tools, methods, and means to accomplish the above (1, 2, and 3). Primary Target Society and community DSM Name Mega Associated Name for Results at That Level Outcomes

The organiza- Macro tion itself Individuals Micro

Outputs

Products

Activities, Processes programs, projects, interventions— means Inputs

Processes

5. I commit to select useful Resources resources, including physical, financial, and human to get the results identified above (1, 2, and 3).

Inputs (or ingredients)

(continued)

5. Aligning Results and Consequences
6. I commit to evaluate the All results I get and use that data to continuously improve what I use, do, produce, and deliver including the impact and consequences of the results. Evaluation and continuous improvement

89
Evaluation and continuous improvement

3. Research almost world-wide provides some interesting patterns. Almost all people say they must deal with all of the DMS factors rigorously, precisely, and measurably. And almost all agree that the ends—Mega and Macro as well as Micro—are dealt with poorly—very poorly.

the key success factors for making successful decisions are presented in the table on the following page. Different from conventional usage? Definitely. and the mental pictures they develop are vital. It is also worth the bother.1 Defining it and using it as a noun—a gap in results—can really pay big dividends. not a gap in means or resources. means. Let’s see. you might be testing your real commitment to the first key factor: Be ready to change your usual and “automatic” responses to your world. . Semantic quibbling? No. We present a unique definition of need as a gap in results. and understanding our definition of need will change your confidence in deriving useful objectives. We will be convincing you that. The word need is poorly used and badly overused. Once again. or methods). Again. As a review. but everyone else wants to use the word as a verb. Simple? Sure it is simple.Chapter 6 Needs Versus Wants: Getting the Data for Justifiable Decisions Key Success Factor Five How do we decide what objectives are worthwhile? How do we choose where we are headed—useful destinations—so that we will be successful? The “trick” is simple: Define need as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. the words we use. again. the conventional and usual won’t always serve you well.

we want for all of us. Define “need” as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. as the underlying basis for planning. Given this definition of need. 2. *In each chapter. including tomorrow’s child. Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/Outcomes. Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how) and prepare all objectives to measure accomplishment. Macro/Outputs. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. or methods). decision making. Here is the definition of need we urge: Current Results 0 Desired Results MEANS END END Needs are gaps between current results and desired results at three levels (Mega. means. and continuous improvement. these five key decision factors are provided with the major topic of that chapter in bold. 4. 5. Micro/Products) for decision making. Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega) of what kind of world.92 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions: Becoming a Strategic Thinker* 1. then the way we use the gaps-in-results data for setting priorities is called needs assessment: the identification and prioritization of needs for selection elimination or reduction. Macro. and Micro). . in measurable performance terms. 3. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now.

when used the way we urge. How do we convince you to use need only as a noun. It is true: In everyday language. Defining need as a gap in results is critical in spite of the way just about everyone else uses it. Get the idea? Needs. You need less money. conventional wisdom. as a noun. Another Opportunity for Useful Change. I need more time. are gaps in results. I need…. I need a new car. even in the face of what everyone else does? (The fact that everyone does it might be a clue to that being the royal—and comfortable—road to mediocrity. I need to go to the mall. I need help. previous experience. I need for you to love me. When we use need as a verb (or in a verb sense) we are jumping right over the requirements of the ends we want to deliver and getting directly into solutions: confusing means and ends… and needs and wants. or just plain hope. You need less time.Chapter 6. I need to be left alone. I need a new coat. not a gap in means or resources. Needs Versus Wants 93 Why do we want to identify needs as gaps in results and then be able to prioritize them? So that we can make useful decisions based on hard performance data and not on wants. Remember Chapter 3 where we went into the difference between ends and means? This definition of need as a gap in results. Wants are usually about means solutions. wishes.)2 . need is used as a verb: I need more money. is another enrichment of that concept: a need is a gap in ends.

Recalling a Conversation on Need with a Giant Several years ago. He was a father of shortterm psychotherapy (Direct Decision Therapy) and the only psychologist I ever heard of who had his doctoral dissertation made into a movie. We were sitting at the end of a basketball court next to our apartment in San Diego when I sprung it on him: (continued) . wanting to explore his brilliance one-on-one. we are usually focusing on means3 as well as solutions we want or that are comfortable. We invited him over for dinner. we are jumping to means and cutting off our options. no choices. Because we want something—a thing. and how each and every time we do.” we are cheating ourselves out of a powerful verbal guide. Comfortable yes. often without realizing it. solution. When we define need as a gap in results. using it as a verb refers more often to wants than to needs. we foreclose our options because need as we use it is a very demanding word—no options. and common.” or “needing.” “need for. when we use need as a verb. Harold Greenwald joined our faculty at the US International University (now the Alliant International University). our chances of basing decisions on really useful data are much improved. usual. Most of us are comfortable with the conventional use of need as a verb. Dr. In fact. we jump into a solution. method.94 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life When we use need as a verb.” “need to. or person—doesn’t turn it into a need. we are defining the basis for poor decisions.4 We are frequently captive of our past and that includes comfortable language behavior. but when we stay comfortable (and conventional) with “need to. When we confuse means and wants with ends and consequences. Notice how often in everyday conversation and in advertising we use need as a verb.

Here are some needs that we see or hear every day. we have the same problem. take away their options and tell them “what they need. When we use need as a noun.” Of course I asked him for more. How about an exercise to try this new key decision-making guide out. They don’t realize they have choices. why do I have so much trouble getting people not to use need as a verb?” Without missing a beat.’ they have cut their options down to one. we open up the window for identifying and selecting means and resources. “If we psychotherapists will be honest with you and each other. Greenwald then went on to explain: “When people use need as a verb. not about ends.Chapter 6. If you want to disempower anyone. . We can continue on with the conventional use of need and continue choosing means and resources before knowing the ends to be achieved. Needs Versus Wants 95 “Harold. Identify which ones are needs—gaps in results—and which ones are not. I was no longer alone in this semantic distinction and found support from one of the great therapists. or we can shift our paradigm—be strategic thinkers—and decide on the basis of reality as well as future success. Recall that the only sensible way to choose a means is on the basis of the results we want to get. Need when used as a verb forecloses options and cuts choices down to one. They don’t realize they have options.” Confirmation.” Wants are almost always about solutions and means. such as ‘I need him’ or ‘I need her. he noted.

I want better food at work. 11. My partner needs to cut his hair. I need to meet more people. I want to live until I am at least 90. We need to increase production at our plant. 5. I want to be married within three years. Let’s see if we agree. We need to earn more money. We have to increase our workforce by 25 percent. 6. 8. 7. . I have to increase the number of people with whom I can network.96 Which of These Statements are Needs and Which are Wants? 1. 10. 9. I date once a month and I should date at least twice a month. 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Needs (Gaps in Results) Wants (Gaps in Processes or Resources) 2. My car only gets 15 miles per gallon and I have to get at least 22. 4. 3.

9. We have to increase our workforce by 25 percent. I have to increase the number of people with whom I can network. My partner needs to cut his hair. We need to earn more money. I need to meet more people. 10. X 11. Only three focus on results (but not needs as gaps in results): 8. Needs Versus Wants Which of These Statements are Needs and Which are Wants? 1. I want to be married within three years. I date once a month and I should date at least twice a month. We need to increase production at our plant. . X None of these statements—regardless of what they got called—are needs as defined as a gap in results except for #8. 7. X X X X X 8. I want better food at work. 5. X X 10. I want to live until I am at least 90. Needs (Gaps in Results) 97 Wants (Gaps in Processes or Resources) X 2. 4. 6.Chapter 6. and 11. My car only gets 15 miles per gallon and I have to get at least 22. X 3.

and 9 are about means. increasing production might be good. to be accomplished before picking the means and resources. “You ‘need’ to move on. “You ‘need’ to tell him to make a commitment or you are moving on. and Silvia thinks they could have a future. but can’t get Oscar to commit to taking the discussion about their future further. She wants to know if they have a future together but doesn’t want to scare him off. 3. 7. production. but at what cost in money and quality? What will hiring or firing people do to the rate of quality.” Another friend tells her. 2. or result. In fact. it aids and abets people who would pick a wrong solution to a problem.” One of Silvia’s friends tells her.98 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life What’s wrong with the others? 1. but is afraid to push the relationship. 6. He is just using you (continued) . From this brief exercise. 4. An Example from Everyday Life: Silvia is really interested in Oscar. ask “What result will come from being successful at what is stated?” For example. Time is flying by.5 and masking this premature selection of means by calling them “needs” only masks the confusion. what result would come from earning more money? Continuing the examples above. “You ‘need’ to be more subtle with him. It is like jumping from unwarranted assumptions to foregone conclusions. it should be becoming clear that most people use need as a logic-shortcut to select a means (or want) before really knowing and justifying the ends to be achieved. And to check out that if a usage is a means. profits. what is the gap in results that will close? Means-in-search-of-ends are being confused with needs. and clients well served? And if cutting one’s hair is the solution (the means) what is the problem. in item #1. Silvia’s mother tells her.6 Making useful choices depends on your defining the end. what result would come from meeting more people? And for item #2. 5.

If these are the means (or the solutions). I would like Oscar to declare his love for me. I would like Oscar to ask me to marry him.7 sits down with a pad of paper and takes the risk of doing a personal needs assessment: I am not married.” Lots of advice on what Silvia “needs” to do. Needs Versus Wants 99 to clean and cook. I am in love with Oscar. I am sad and depressed8 at least half of the time. In fact.Chapter 6. moving on. all of the advice Silvia is getting is about means: asking for commitment. I would like to be happily married and stay happily married. being subtle. with some discomfort. I don’t know if Oscar loves me. I don’t know if Oscar would like to marry me. I am frequently lonely. otherwise he would have committed long ago. I would like to not feel lonely. So Silvia. what are the problems? What is the gap in results that Silvia wants to close? Wouldn’t it make sense for her to see what results she is getting now and which ones she wants to get? Identify needs and then select the means and resources to meet those needs. I would like to be in love with Oscar. I am not happy with my personal life. (continued) . I would like to be happy almost all of the time and never be depressed again.

Then Silvia selects the gaps in results. And they jumped out at her. only one of which seems to be Oscar. and she doesn’t really know where it is. . She feels quite relieved. I would like a committed soul mate and partner. Silvia feels as if weight has been lifted from her back. It is time for her to find out if he is in her future or not. Silvia realizes that the means to closing the gap between her current sadness and depression and her happiness have been Oscar and his non-commitment. Oscar is a means to Silvia’s gaps in emotional ends. what’s the problem?” Almost immediately. at least for now. She has been confusing Oscar with happiness. Silvia realizes that she has options. But her relationship is not there. then it is time to find that out so that she can move on. If Oscar is not going to be a part of her life. It trumps everything else. “If Oscar is the solution. which are the highest priorities? My unhappiness and depression is the most pressing. This is a revelation to her.100 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life I don’t have any children. She thinks. I would like at least two children. What to do? Sylvia scribbles again: Of these gaps in results. I don’t have a life partner. She wants Oscar to return her love and commitment and move into a happy marriage and life. ideally a boy and then a girl. Silvia decided to be happy and took positive steps to close the gaps in results in her life: find out if Oscar shares a future with her or find someone else with whom she wants to build a happy and fulfilling life.

” But kids were starving and so were adults. Needs Versus Wants An Example from an Organizational Perspective: 101 Global Hunger Eliminated Now! is an NGO—a nongovernmental organization—founded in good faith by concerned U. They served country after country. When they went to provide nutritious food to Ghaxia. They raised money and bought good food at reduced prices. Sometimes surplus food was donated to them. woman. He was dismayed to hear the dictator’s take-it-or-leave-it demand. they did not want malnutrition to be a cause of death and destruction.S. but he was committed to the GHEN mission) to extend the nutritional health to Ghaxia. Then he did his homework and assessed the physical health status of the citizens and noted that gaps between: Current health and required health Current death rate and desired rate (which was zero from non-natural causes (continued) . and child in the world to get enough nutritious food to consume and become and remain healthy and be able to be self-sufficient and self-reliant. At first he thought that some nutrition was better than none. their dictator told Global Hunger Eliminated Now (GHEN) that he would not allow food in unless they gave him one half of all shipments and that the only foods allowable would be candies and cakes “in keeping with the cultural values of the country. Candies and cakes? Paco was hired (at a lower wage than he could get in any other job. and Canadian citizens who felt very strongly that hungry people makes for an angry world.Chapter 6. They wanted every man. They won world-wide notoriety and were lauded by heads of state as well as common people almost everywhere. At the least. usually quite successfully.

But Paco collected the needs assessment data and came up with the most humane solution possible. Sad indeed.102 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Current nutritional substances available Required nutritional health substances required Current available nutritious substances available Required “payoffs” to the dictator Projected health of citizens after meeting the dictator’s demands Not a pretty picture. but would likely make citizen health worse. Paco was dismayed. Paco asked for and got help from the United Nations and that didn’t work. As of this writing. although they did pass a resolution demanding that the dictator relent. He computed that meeting the dictator’s requirements not only would be unethical. nothing has changed. carbohydrates were not what would meet their health requirements and nutritional demands. Paco tried to convince the dictator. . None. Sadly. How to close the gaps in results between current citizen health and wellbeing and required levels. Your success in making good decisions depends on it. The data were clear. both from a health standpoint as well as an ethical one. Don’t make things worse. but he wouldn’t budge. Could Silvia and Paco afford to leap into means before selecting them on the basis of priority gaps in results—on needs? Can you afford to select means and resources that lead to lousy ends? We hope your answer is no and that you have decided to no longer confuse needs and wants. Paco reported back to the GHEN Board his recommendation to not serve Ghaxia nor meet the dictator’s demands. No needs—gaps in results—would be met.

We can use the money for food and rent. No needs.” Martha answers. “We are really short on money this month. Accountability for results and consequences. It is really straightforward. and besides we are young and healthy.” (continued) . we don’t own the consequences. “We just cannot afford to get sick. Needs Versus Wants 103 Using Needs Data to Select Appropriate Means: From Gaps in Results to Useful Solutions Now we know: A need is a gap in results. if our data that identified the needs are really solid. Macro. and Micro levels—on the basis of the cost to meet the need as compared to the cost to ignore it.Chapter 6. No gaps in results. how do we prioritize them? Prioritizing Needs. If there are needs. An Example from Life: George comes home and tells his wife. We often ask (or get asked) what it costs to meet a need— close a gap in results—and this is where we often get switched off.” We can defuse this. A problem is a need selected for closure or at least reduction. We often hear (or tell ourselves) that “this costs too much” and/or “we don’t have the time/resources/support. If we also price the cost to ignore the need. no gaps in results. the decision maker does. “Suppose we get sick?” George says. if we get turned down. Rank the needs on the basis of the cost to meet as compared to the cost to ignore. We prioritize needs—at the Mega. no problems. I am canceling my health insurance.

) So don’t pick a solution before knowing the problem.104 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Martha asks. and hospital are over $16. “We both wanted a family. Did George and Martha’s needs assessment help? No. And the problem is always based on needs. and cancels their health coverage. “What does it cost us if we do get sick with a heart problem or some digestive problems and how does that compare to the money we save?” George is not moved. Really.200 in the short run. When you have prioritized the needs. Here is a sample—a very simple one—for the couple above: . Selecting Means. You could even make yourself a simple table to help compare costs and consequences. it is nothing more than asking what it costs to meet the need as compared to the costs to ignore it. a problem is a need selected for reduction or elimination: no need.000. then identify alternative ways and means that will close the gaps in results. they did not do one. And they certainly did not project the comparison of the costs to meet the need (health maintenance and care for a pregnant wife) and the costs to ignore it (saving $1. George looks panicked. “What do we do?” She schedules a physician’s appointment and found that the projected costs for care. Martha announces she is pregnant— they both wanted to start a family—and she must start seeing an obstetrician. It has a fancy term: costs-results analysis. Two months later. but not now!” Martha asks. We now have the basis for picking means— for picking solutions. delivery. no problem.

Chapter 6. Needs Versus Wants Current Results Paying $500 per month for health insurance Desired Results Have health insurance with less money Cost to Meet the Need -0- Cost to Ignore the Need Possible uncovered illness Possible Methods Means Cancel insurance and payments Get a job where all costs are covered Advantages Immediate money for other things Might be good to change jobs Disadvantages Possible high emergency costs Likes current job Probation and waiting period for insurance to start Rely on public assistance Not making house payments on time— penalties of $30 per month No penalties for house payments $30 per month $30 per month in late fees that add up Refinance Only a small co-payment Don’t qualify because of current assets None of the $30 per month is left for other expenses Costs more money for the loan period Moving costs likely to be higher than staying put Move (continued) 105 .

Desired Results Have enough money to eat what we want Cost to Meet the Need $24 per month Cost to Ignore the Need Nothing Possible Methods Means Only buy nutritious foods.106 Current Results Not getting food we like because we are $24 per week short for desired purchases Etc. not just favorite foods Advantages Happier disposition for my wife and myself Disadvantages Just not happy with diet 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life .

and they would not be sold anything they did not really require. they would have identified the needs first. simply ask yourself these questions: 1. and selected the best ones for them. you have used needs assessment data to identify alternative ways and means to meet needs. Customers always knew they would get good repairs and at a reasonable price.” Dad’s objections were overruled by lots of business school examples and advice. The changes started. You have the ability to select means on the basis of hard data: What does it cost to meet the need as compared to the costs to ignore it? In our simple case study. Instead. Will it close the gaps in results—meet the needs? Will it close the gaps in results at all three levels of results? Which alternative will get the required results at the lowest cost? When you ask and answer these questions. Abel and his associates were always good to their word. “Let’s increase our profits. if George and Martha were good decision makers. Marc called in the five plumbers who had worked at Abel’s for an average of seven years and told them. “There will be no (continued) . They had a good following and had made good. they jumped into a solution—canceled health insurance—before computing the actual costs.” he told his father. money for the past 20 years. Expensive and worrisome. identified alternative ways and means to close the gaps. Abel’s son Marc had just gotten his business degree and thought his father was light years behind the times.Chapter 6. 2. “Quarterly profits. Needs Versus Wants 107 For each intervention. 3. A Business Example: Abel’s Plumbing had been in business for 21 years. but not great.

It will work for you. poor decisions on the means selected simply to make short-term profits. unfortunately. such as “higher profits” or “reducing our late fees”) as gaps in results. After 18 months. His reputation was gone. None. and he finally sold what little equity he had left to his bitter competitor who took the resources but would not use the Abel Plumbing name. but the plumbers knew they were operating on the owner’s license and it would be difficult to find another employer. the repeat customers started to decline. And three of the best workers went to work elsewhere. the profits did go up—plenty. Another 14 percent the next year. Marc did not do a needs assessment. . He was no longer trusted. For the first 14 months. Things were going downhill and the profits evaporated.” There were overt objections. they knew the old man and trusted him. not project the costs to increase profits as compared to the costs for keeping the business philosophy the way it was. If you identify needs (not just wants. but at the end of 24 months. was not enough to save the business. Not much at first. poor needs assessment. And you are in possession of the facts you have to have to figure what you give and what you get—costs-consequences—for each of your decisions. you are well on your way to make data-based decisions. Mr. He called in everyone and reversed Marc’s policy. Abel called some of his old and formerly loyal clients and asked them what happened: why did they leave? He got back the answer he didn’t want. But this. Marc was all smiles and Dad seemed to see that the solution his son had come up with was profitable. The costs-consequences of Marc’s decision were not computed at first. but surely were computed at the end: poor planning. Besides. identify the gaps in results including profits and return on investment. business was down 23 percent.108 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life jobs for less than $221.

This is a really tough shift for most people. Or we say. While Maslow’s work helps us with motivation. What about Abe Maslow’s famous (or infamous) “Hierarchy of Needs”? Sorry. 53. et. 2. We read his important contribution in psychology books under “motivation.. it shows need can be used as both a noun and a verb. January 25. Maslow’s hierarchy is important. we need air” is not literally true: We require air on a periodic basis (when there is an oxygen deficit in our tissues. 1979. 3. …or solutions in search of problems. All continue to confuse needs and wants and means and ends.” Sure you do. and needs and wants (or motivators). Florida Home Builders Association. and not a verb: Supreme Court of Florida.” which is just where it belongs. al. Appelles. Given a gap in any of Maslow’s levels—from survival through self-actualization—he provides the rough priorities that most people will use. I know what I mean and so does everyone else.” but rather a hierarchy of motivators. we would die because we would be forcing air at the time when wastes should be expelled. Division of Labor. Using need only as a noun will pay huge dividends—huge. . it is important so we don’t confuse means and ends. We want you to join us in bucking the conventional in favor of the functional. No. which is a cycle—not steady). Needs Versus Wants 109 Endnotes 1. Don’t become part of this confusion and resulting problems. Again. even in the face of cold reality. Bureau of Apprenticeship. but in spite of the conventional language. “Well. First survive and then move to close the gaps in the other levels. 384. For anyone with a legalistic bent. 4. there is a Florida Supreme Court decision that ruled that need is a noun. and sure others do. Appellants vs. Because dictionaries speak to common usage and not necessarily to useful usage. but if we ingested air constantly. Arguments such as “Well. 5.Chapter 6. it’s not a “hierarchy of needs. The rationalizations— or pushbacks—abound and flow in order to keep from changing. it can get in our way if we continue his confusion of means—motivation—with ends— closing gaps in results and consequences. but I am going to be an iconoclast.

but the payoff in the future is usually very worthwhile. Any means is some process. the ends for one person might provide the entry point (or means) for others. just confronting an uncomfortable situation may be initially worrisome. Just consider any end as a result. activity. And without knowing that there is a gap between current results and possible different results leaves one hopeless. product. Some decisions are painful. . 8. 7. To be sure. Hopelessness results.110 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life 6. Depression isn’t fun. or consequence. Often. or initiative that can consume existing ends or produce new ones.” it is worth thinking about depression as the instance when one only sees “what is” and doesn’t realize that a “what should be” (or could be) exists. Extending the great psychiatrist Viktor Frankl’s concept of “existential vacuum” to our suggestion that “need is a noun.

Define “need” as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. means. 2. your consequences. Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how) and prepare all objectives to measure accomplishment. and continuous improvement. including tomorrow’s child. your change. Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/Outcomes. 3. Micro/Products) for decision making. we want for all of us. your choice. in measurable performance terms. 5. decision making.Chapter 7 It Is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds We have arrived at that critical 30 seconds: that time when you decide to change your life. 4. or methods). You may choose to never be mediocre and to become successful—your future. You have mastered (and internalized) two templates (the third is coming) and the reasons and some tools for making each come real in your life—your personal and your organizational life: Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions: Becoming a Strategic Thinker 1. And: . Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega) of what kind of world. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. as the underlying basis for planning. Macro/Outputs. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now.

Assess Needs 2. including the impact and consequences of the results. Implement 5. 3. Now for the third template or guide. produce. Evaluate . do. and 3). 2. and means to accomplish the above (1. Select Means 4. Here is a six-step process for identifying and resolving problems—for getting from the results you are getting now to the ones you choose to obtain: 6. I commit to evaluate the results I get and use that data to continuously improve what I use. Revise as Required 1. I commit to select useful resources—including physical. I commit to add value to my organization and/or family. I commit to select and use efficient tools. Template 3: A Decision-Making Process This template can serve as a guide to your palette of decision guides for successful decision making: problem solving.112 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Decision Success Model (DSM) 1. 2. and deliver. I commit to add value to our shared world and community. 2. 6. and human—to get the results identified above (1. I commit to add value to my immediate associates at work (and/or close friends). 4. Analyze Needs 3. 5. and 3). methods. financial.

Chapter 7. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds

113

Using the Third Guide—Problem Solving—To Get from “What Is” to “What Should Be.” This six-step guide is a process for identifying and resolving problems (and identifying opportunities). It starts with 1. Assessment of needs, problems, and opportunities, then 2. Analysis to determine detailed performance requirements for meeting needs, 3. Selection of solutions and means to meet the needs (close the gaps in results and consequences), 4. Design, development, and implementation, 5. Evaluation using the criteria from 2 and 6. Continuous revision at any step. Why is this useful for you? Because you have the tools to identify choices based on changing from current consequences to desired ones. You have learned that needs are different from wants, and the more precise and rigorous you are about your objectives, the better you can match ways to close the gaps in results with the best ways to get the desired success. You are what you do and deliver—you are what you accomplish. You can be in control of your three Cs:

• • •

Change Choice Consequences

As you make your choices, note that when dealing with others, you can control the results of your behavior through the choices you make and the behavior you choose to continue and the behavior you choose to stop. You can be successful, and you can be the person that others choose to associate with and work with. You are what you do. By your choices, you may be successful in the world of change by selecting appropriate changes for yourself. You can define the consequences you want and the ones you don’t want. With the tools and guides from the earlier chapters, you have defined your needs and identified the performances you want to accomplish (and did so with precision), and you know what you want to accomplish. You are ready to get from “what is” to “what should be.” This guide shows you the steps.

114

30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life

Let’s take a close look at each of the six functions for problem solving and see how they can make your 30 seconds really successful. Tracking the flowchart1 on page 112:

1. Assess needs.
We covered needs assessment—identifying gaps in results and prioritizing them—in Chapter 6. And by the way, a problem is a need selected for reduction or elimination.2 Simply list the gaps between the results and consequences you are getting now, and the results and consequences you would like to accomplish. This step provides the objective data for your decisions: What do you want to change and what do you want to keep? This is your life and your happiness. You can choose to change that which will bring you desired results and consequences. Want to have a better job? Better relationships? Live a long and healthy life? Better feelings about yourself? What gaps in results and consequences do you want to close and which ones will you choose to leave as they are? This first problem-solving step (step 1 in the flowchart on page 112) gets you to be objective about what to keep and what to change. Be frank with yourself. Nobody cares as much about you as you. What life do you want?3

2. Analyze needs.
Not only are you finding the detailed specifications to guide you as you move from “what is” to “what should be,” you are also developing the measurable objectives for guiding your behavior choices, which was covered in Chapter 3. Also in Chapter 3, we emphasized that we don’t select the alternative methods and means—solution alternatives—before knowing the ends we are to deliver. We don’t want to get the solutions cart before the problems horse, so to speak. Additionally, in Chapter 6 you learned that the way to identify which alternative that will best get you from here to there is on the basis of (1) the needs (gaps in results) selected

Chapter 7. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds

115

and (2) the costs and consequences—alternative payoffs—for alternative ways and means to close the gaps in results. We don’t select the means (the how-to-behave actions) at this problem-solving step; we just identify them and note the advantages and disadvantages of each. This step (step 2 in the flowchart) lets us plan our future— to create the future we want. We look at the details of what we have to accomplish, such as this example:

• • •

Make and keep a positive connection with a loved one for at least two years. Get a new and better job that pays at least 10 percent more than my current one. Make sure our place is clean and sanitary so that our friends don’t make negative comments about dirt and smell and we don’t get sick. Get the bills paid on time so that there are no penalties and unpaid balances for at least a year (if ever). Live a long and healthy life, at least 10 years longer than the insurance actuarial tables with no major illnesses requiring a hospital stay of over three days.

For each accomplishment—objective—we list the alternative ways and means to reach them (and close the gaps in results) and note the advantages and disadvantages of each:

Get a new partner through friends. Get counseling.116 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Possible Ways and Means • Risks being rejected • Might get the partner angry • Clears the air • Clarifies mutual expectations • Easier than finding someone new • Exciting to find someone new • Friends don’t have good taste • Embarrassing to admit weakness in relationship building • Takes a lot of time and energy to date and relate • Expensive • Demeaning to admit I can’t find someone on my own • Takes time and effort • Access people I might not otherwise meet • Hard to find someone I trust • Expensive • I would have to admit problems and say them out loud • I will stop kidding myself about my problems • Get some continuing selfdirection for improving my life and well-being Example Objective Make and keep a positive connection with a loved one for at least two years. Get a new partner through dating service. (continued) . Possible Ways and Means Make a personal contract with my current partner for mutually acceptable treatment.

Get my partner to do the cleaning. Possible Ways and Means Ask for a promotion with my current employer. Make sure our place is clean and sanitary so that our friends don’t make negative comments about dirt and smell and we don’t get sick. (continued) . It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Possible Ways and Means 117 Example Objective Get a new and better job that pays at least 10 percent more than my current one.Chapter 7. why should they? • They will make me “pay” for it • Likely to offend them Network with friends and associates for possible openings. • Alerts my current bosses that I am looking • Could come up with an improvement without having to change locations or associates • Looks like I cannot be competitive in the market • Find something that I don’t now know exists • I will “owe” them if they hook me up • These services are getting more popular • Access to large database • Might cost more than I can now afford • Time consuming • Expensive • Might not link me with things that will interest me • Time consuming • If I won’t do it. Hire a recruiter. Go online for jobs.

Find the reasons that I charge too much for things I won’t have when the bill comes. Call my mom.118 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Possible Ways and Means • I will have to renounce my laziness • Time consuming • Not much fun • Makes me take pride in myself and my surroundings • Less expensive in terms of money and obligations than other possibilities • Expensive • Convenient • Lets me keep my current bad habits • Requires less personal change than other options • Lets her feel required • When will I grow up? • Requires challenging my current habits • Requires personal change • Makes me deal with real problems instead of my rationalizations • Gets me to deal with reality and choose to change Example Objective Possible Ways and Means Dedicate myself to regular cleaning and maintenance. (continued) . Hire a cleaner. Get the bills paid on time so that there are no penalties and unpaid balances for at least a year (if ever).

Identify rewards for being current on my bills. • Time consuming • I don’t know how • Risk being objective about my current behavior and income • Gets me on a responsible path • Gets me to deal with reality • Not fun—takes away spontaneity • Gets me out of debt • Keeps my head above water • Reduces my constant anxiety about money problems • Stop paying penalties and frees the money for better things • Gets my head straight about reality • Makes me deal with what really motivates me • Can I be objective? • Gets my head straight about reality • Makes me deal with what really motivates me • Can I be objective? Stick to my budget. (continued) . Identify punishers for not being current on my bills.Chapter 7. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Possible Ways and Means 119 Example Objective Possible Ways and Means Make a budget.

. join a health club.120 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Advantages and Disadvantages of Each Possible Ways and Means • Gets my finances under control • Artificial way to make me be responsible • Expensive • Deals more with my weaknesses than building up strength and responsibility • Formalizes my commitment • Ties me and my time down • Makes it a social activity and less of a drudge • Some expenses for memberships. Reduce stress through diet and mind-set. equipment. • Makes sense • Health foods are not usually tasty • Nutritionist and guides can be nothing more than fads • I will look and feel better • Easier said than done • I worry a lot—every major thing I have worried about has not come to be. etc.). etc. plan daily menus and intakes. Live a long and healthy life. Have a healthful diet (get a nutritionist. at least 10 years longer than the insurance actuarial tables with no major illnesses requiring a hospital stay of over three days. so I have rewarded myself by worrying • The medical and psychological data are clear: reduce stress or die • It will be good for me physically and mentally • No real financial costs Example Objective Possible Ways and Means Get a money manager. Exercise (such as get a trainer. work out with friends).

(Why kid yourself? It is your life and you live with the consequences of what you do and don’t do. When you address this with objectivity and rigor. At this step. honesty.” Don’t lose commitment and courage. and commitment. Be good to yourself. Chapter 5 spoke to methods-means selection. and consequences. you are taking control of your life. Now we go from the planning parts of problem solving to the solutions and implementation parts. The last person you want to delude is yourself. Be the captain of your own fate. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds 121 This second problem-solving step requires objectivity. Now is the time to select the ones that are the most effective and efficient. and our alternatives. our results.) Realize that not making a decision is a decision and a problem doesn’t cease to exist simply because you choose to ignore it. “What does each give me and what does each get me?” What are the advantages and disadvantages of each way and means for reaching your objective? Be clear. Select means (the best ways and processes from among alternatives). happiness. and you will feel good about yourself for taking control and determining your own future. our needs. Decide and determine your own success. This step in your success is where you deal with reality and keep yourself open to possible ways and means to make choices that will measurably improve your life. . Choose the best methods and means to get you from “what is” to “what should (and could) be” to meet the needs and close the gaps in results. and rigorous. simply ask of each objective.Chapter 7. you simply build on what you did in the last step: identify the alternative ways and means to meet the needs—close the gaps in results.4 Given your commitment and objectivity. open. 3. It will be tempting at this stage to be less-than-formal—to “wing it. We have cared enough about ourselves and our successful future by being thorough and precise about our criteria. Take control.

what has not.” What’s working and what isn’t? You must ask yourself about your results and your success and determine what has worked. A bit scary? Sure it is. planning. . with the objectives you set in Step 2. HERE WE ARE!!!! YOUR 30 SECONDS!!!!! You have all the tools. and knowledge now to decide to change—to move to the personal and organizational payoffs you are getting now to the ones that will be successful. what to change. Evaluate. Implement. This choice is made within 30 seconds! All your thinking. This is your “reality check. and move forward with a new you. Worthwhile? You can bet your future success and happiness on yourself and your new competence in decision making. and doing up to now was simply getting you ready to make the choices to be successful. concepts. Now it is your turn. DO IT! And put into practice what you have decided to accomplish and the ways and means you have selected to get you to success. the consequences of your changed choices and behaviors. This step allows you to compare your accomplishments. Support yourself as you do what you have decided to do. DECIDE TO BE SUCCESSFUL! You now commit to and actually implement what you have decided to change and decided to continue. or worse. and what to continue. Here is where you determine your effectiveness and efficiency. This is your 30 seconds to change your life and avoid being mediocre. based on the needs (gaps in results) and objectives you have selected. guides.122 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life 4. SUCCESS IS YOURS FOR THE CHOOSING. templates. 5.

You are in charge of your success. Let’s compare Greenwald’s decision-making process with this six-step process. change then and there. . You can modify and change at any point in this problem-solving process. happiness. Decide.Chapter 7. If something is not working. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds 123 Be very clear about the results you get from your new decisions and choices. This time you are the master of change. not the victim of it. Simply decide to change what should be changed. The nice thing about choice and taking control is that you can decide to change anytime you have the data and the desire to change. and see how well they match—how they will help you be successful. consider what to change and what to keep. If you are not making the progress required to meet the needs—to close the gaps in results—change then and there. Identify what to change and what to continue. It will work for you. If a gap in results appears. See the table on the next page for a comparison. This sixth step is your renewal step. Be clear. and be honest with yourself. and consequences. be objective. Continuously improve. Choose. 6. Use it to track your progress against your defined needs and the resulting objectives. Taking Stock It is time to take a breath and see where you have gotten. Use the objectives you derived (from the needs—gaps in results—on which your objectives are based) to discover your successes and your shortfalls: what objectives were met and which ones were not met.

Analyze needs (determine detailed objectives and identify but don’t select possible ways and means to get you from “what is” to “what should be”). Be ready to decide to change in the future if you want different payoffs. Change. (Same) Identify the payoffs you do want. Decide to change our behavior. Sean has been down for quite a while. Select solutions and means from among alternatives. (continued) . but things aren’t together for him. Sure. he graduated college and is well on his way for his master’s degree. A Decision-Making and Problem-Solving Example. But it takes your decision. Identify the behaviors you are displaying that deliver the negative payoffs. You may decide to identify and resolve problems—and you will do it well if you use the templates and tools provided earlier—and make decisions on what problems to solve and how. (Same) Determine effectiveness and efficiency and revise as required. 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life The 30 Seconds Steps Assess needs (identify problem based on need). Decide and commit to change— implement.124 Basic Decision-Making Steps (Based on Greenwald) Identify the payoffs you are getting now that you don’t want. Compatible aren’t they? Problem solving and decision making are related—deeply related. Identify the behaviors that will deliver the desired payoffs.

loneliness and rejection another. and he is criticized for “not being a team player. Sean has read all of the management books on excellence and change (many assigned in his graduate classes). but everything he tries seems to make things worse. Patient understanding is one thing. and he has also been through a fair share of the “Dr. He told her he loved her and wants to pursue a possible long-term relationship. And the most recent love interest seems to be “on again. often less qualified people than him. off again” recently. One such quick-fix decision is to lower the shock-resistant features of a switch box—that is made by one of their divisions in China—for which he is the home office manager. He works out three times a week and gets a full physical exam every two years.Chapter 7. the debt seems to mysteriously rise to alarming levels) and estimates are that at the rate he is paying it off. the organization has been making some—it seems to Sean—quick-fix decisions.” The rest of his life is not going well either. (continued) . His comments to his supervisor about this not being safe and therefore risky are ignored. His health is reported as excellent: one good thing in his life. but she says she loves him as well but there is another guy she just can’t seem to get out of her mind. or raise expectations with no good results. he will come out even in about 27 years. His credit card debt seems out of control (each time he meets someone new. He is down and not seeing any light at the end of the tunnel (other than a freight train coming toward him). Feelgood” books on the Net (always purchased at a discount to help his swollen credit card debt). It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds 125 All the good jobs and assignments at work seem to go to other. Sean’s health is good. In addition. Everyone else seems to know what to do. This mandate came from his division boss in order to get the bottom line looking better for next year’s shareholders’ meeting.

objectively. He commits to try positive decision-making tools and concepts. Sean decides to look at his current behaviors that were bringing the results he wanted to change. He begins by reviewing the three templates and commits to follow them.126 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life That is “what is” for Sean. He wants happiness and a future. It couldn’t hurt. he thinks.567 Advancement to above 30% of others in my job area Be happy at least 95% of the time with no major longlasting depression Credit card debt at zero within two years (continued) . he said to himself. He realizes that commitment is important. Now to paper and pencil: Future promotions at work unlikely Feeling lonely and sad almost all of the time Credit card debt at $13. One Sunday (the sun wasn’t out anyway and his lady was off someplace not specified by her in order for her to “find herself”). Let’s go. He brings out the writing pad and props it up in front of him along with the three templates. He knew he had to do this. comfortable or not. But he sure doesn’t like the payoffs—results—he is getting now. since shooting-from-the-hip with loosely formed destinations and fuzzy tools wouldn’t work… they haven’t in the past. in order to find what was leading to negative results and consequences.

No unsafe products sold by my organization No deaths or disabilities from our products No successful lawsuits against the organization or me I want a committed relationship with shared love and a shared future Full mutual trust My health remains good and better Live at least ten years beyond the predictions for me Now that Sean has identified needs as gaps in results (he thinks that he might have to make the criteria more rigorous so that all will be on an interval or ratio scale). but then realizes that health and happiness are primary. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds 127 My income is average and I don’t have enough for some of the “fun” things in life. such as vacations longer than a weekend and a car that is a joy to own and drive My organization and thus me as a participant face lawsuits for safety violations and for possible deaths and permanent disabilities I don’t have a mutual love or partnership I don’t trust my significant other My health is good (actually very good) My life expectancy is 81 I will earn at least 30% more than I spend (Note: keep it sensible.” Not easy. He first thinks that his love life is number one. So (continued) .Chapter 7. he then prioritizes on the basis of “the cost to meet the needs as compared to the costs for ignoring the needs. Sean) and have enough for comfortable retirement (at least 70% above my working income) when I am 65.

almost automatic responses in his day-to-day activities. Now to those personal relations. And finally. And his job? And the legal liability that is hanging over his head? And that damned credit card debt! Could he deal with all of this? Why not chuck it all and move to one of the islands of Hawaii and live on breadfruit? No. and trustworthy in a week.128 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life he ranks those as tied for first. He saw quite clearly that trust was basic to love and mutual future. For happiness. Back to his commitment to change his life. that was not a good means—or solution—he would end it with her now. And this meant changing some old habits—some old. he had to make target changes in his behavior (the means he used to create his results). for he had committed to do what was required to be successful and be happy. He realizes that for health. Next. Should he take his case to the CEO and see if the risky and quick-fix decision could be reversed? Quit? Hold tight and hope for the best? And what about promotion and future earnings? What alternatives existed (continued) . so he decided to give his lady one week to make up her mind. well that takes some doing. He was most of the way there. He now knew his current results and his desired results. Whew. No sense in pulling an impacted wisdom tooth slowly. he simply has to continue his diet and exercise lifestyle. Now to the job. committed. that credit card debt. No. It was unlikely that she would miraculously become loving. that won’t do. That felt good. Sean clustered the needs—gaps in results—and noticed that health and happiness shared ranking #1 and that his job was not as important as his personal relations. Could he actually pull it off? It began to become clear that his current set of behaviors—how he interacted with his world—would have to change.

Based on the costs and consequences (psychological as well as financial). Spending on friends? Did that buy love and acceptance? No. and useful. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds 129 including the trip to see the CEO? Sean pondered alternative ways and means to close the work place gaps in results. Could he? Would he? Sean faced his 30-second decision: to shift from current mediocrity (and pain) to success: to change his behavior to get the new consequences he now defined. Next. he had to consider the credit card debt and the feelings of guilt and anxiety that followed him around constantly because of it. That seemed to be the best of the possible ways of going: Decide to change his behavior and act on those changes. but that would dig him out of his financial hole. Sean listed what he had to achieve and what he had to do. It all seemed clear now to Sean. What to do? Credit card counseling in the past only unearthed companies that wanted to shift his debt burden from the credit card to them. And he could not put anything transitory on his credit card. practical. (continued) . Decisions. THE DECISION WAS MADE.Chapter 7. Perhaps his poor assignments and income were due to his not being professional and proactive in his on-the-job behavior. It only took a few seconds—30 seconds—and Sean was on his way. decisions. He had to cut down on spending on anything he would not have at the end of the month (and end of the year) and increase his payments at least 20 percent above the amount billed for the month—at least. He would have to cut back on spending. Was he spending as a quick fix to his unhappiness? Sean got out his old bills and noticed that almost everything he charged he did not have now or even have at the end of the billing period. Sensible. he opted to see the CEO.

This has been quite a journey for you: three templates (Five Key Decision Factors. Whew. And he notices that he is upbeat and happier than ever before. Self-Assessment Exercise Based on what you have learned and mastered in this book. but as a tourist and not as a beachcomber. Sean’s visit to the CEO failed and he left the organization and works now at another one where he is listened to. As Sean continuously improves. including women. respected.130 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life A year later. identify what gaps you want to close and which ones you are willing to leave as they are. . Oh. It worked! Getting Your 30 Seconds to be Powerful Congratulations. and he finds that he misses little of what he used to buy. The friend is gone. last he heard she was living with a guy who lives off of her income and occasionally abuses her. Sean continues to eat right and exercise. and the six-step problem-solving process) in addition to Greenwald’s Direct Decision model. He is also saving a bit and looking forward to that trip to Hawaii. and already moving up both in responsibilities and income. he reviews his decisions and is all ready to change if the gaps in results reappear or new ones emerge. he is also meeting more centered people. and tools and concepts for your “tool kit” for success. The credit card debt is coming down (they keep calling him and asking him if he wants his credit limited increased and he answers by asking for a lower interest rate). Did it “take”? Was it useful for you? Take the opportunity to see for yourself by doing the same assessment again as you did in Chapter 2. the DMS process.

make decisions in order to be accepted by others. make a decision without the approval of my boss. am happy with where I am in my organization. would rather do what will be accepted rather than that which will be successful.Chapter 7. Use the following scale: 1 = Rarely. want acceptance of others even at high personal cost. am happy with my life. make decisions without objective data. Describe how you see you currently operating. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds Change Self-Assessment WHAT IS Indicate the relative frequency with which the following statements are true concerning the "drivers" for the way you make decisions. Please provide two ratings for each statement. don't care what others think when I make a decision. watch others to see what they do before acting. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 (continued) 131 . am happy with my personal relationships. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 avoid making decisions. using only my experience or my hunches. do things the way I have done them in the past. feel uncomfortable doing things that are out of my friends' norms. make decisions that will lead to my becoming the boss. am open to new ideas and frames of reference. if Ever 2 = Almost Never 3 = Not Usually I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I I 4 = Sometimes 5 = Quite Frequently 6 = Consistently WHAT SHOULD BE Describe how you think you should be operating. worry about my decisions once made.

I make decisions that will lead to personal success. I keep acting the same ways even though they lead to my unhappiness. Use the following scale: 1 = Rarely. I evaluate the consequences of my decisions for my organization. I use evaluation results for fixing and improving. I evaluate the consequences of my decisions on the job. I evaluate the consequences of my decisions for my personal relationships. The impact of what I do and what my organization delivers for external clients and our shared society is my primary focus. Describe how you see you currently operating. I make decisions that lead to good personal relationships. if Ever 2 = Almost Never 3 = Not Usually 4 = Sometimes 5 = Quite Frequently 6 = Consistently WHAT IS WHAT SHOULD BE Describe how you think you should be operating. I use fads. Please provide two ratings for each statement.132 CHANGE SELF-ASSESSMENT (continued) Indicate the relative frequency with which the following statements are true concerning the "drivers" for the way you make decisions. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life 1 2 3 4 5 6 . I use evaluation results for blaming myself or others. 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 1 2 3 4 5 6 I take risks to be successful. I make decisions that will lead to organizational success.

Use all three levels of planning and results (Mega/Outcomes. identify the psychological. Before We Close Now. Define “need” as a gap in results (not as insufficient levels of resources. means. . personal. including tomorrow’s child. Five Key Success Factors for Making Successful Decisions: Becoming a Strategic Thinker 1. It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds 133 Compare the changes you might have made with how you responded in Chapter 2. and now you know how to choose to change from your current reality to the one you want to create. Were there any changes here from the assessment you completed in Chapter 2? We hope so. 5. Micro/Products) for decision making. we want for all of us. Use a wide-world view—an ideal vision (Mega) of what kind of world. 2. 4. For each. decision making. or methods). 3. as you decide what changes to make in your critical 30 seconds.Chapter 7. Don’t assume that what worked in the past will work now. Prioritize them (and it is OK to attend to more than one at the same time). Differentiate between ends (what) and means (how) and prepare all objectives to measure accomplishment. and continuous improvement. Get out of your comfort zone and be open to change. Doing this will assist you in your decisions to change. making your 30 seconds really count. List those gaps in results that you want to change and those you want to maintain. as the underlying basis for planning. in measurable performance terms. and occupational cost for meeting each need—closing the gap in results— and the cost for not reducing or eliminating each. Reality is your best friend. Macro/Outputs. review the guides provided in this book: The Five Key Success Factors for Useful Decisions.

financial. 6. and human—to get the results identified above (1. Select Means 4. I commit to add value to my organization and/or family. I commit to select useful resources—including physical. Assess Needs 2. Revise as Required 1. I commit to evaluate the results I get and use that data to continuously improve what I use. including the impact and consequences of the results. I commit to add value to our shared world and community. 5. Implement 5. This is a dynamic process to get from “what is” to “what should (or could) be. 4. The Six-Step Problem-Solving Process. and deliver. and 3). 6. 2. Decision Success Model (DSM) 1. I commit to add value to my immediate associates at work (and/or close friends). and means to accomplish the above (1.134 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life The Decision Success Model (DSM). Analyze Needs 3. produce. methods. 2. 2.” As you go through each step. and 3). do. you can revise (change your choices) at any time in order to get from the results and payoffs you are getting now to the ones you have chosen. I commit to select and use efficient tools. 3. Evaluate .

Greenwald used to advise people that if you are feeling depressed (frequently anger turned inward). It is Decision Time: That Critical 30 Seconds 135 It is all very doable if you care enough to choose to help yourself be successful. try to bring it on yourself.” Happiness. Be the kind of person you would like to be with. we all feel down—sometimes worse. act happy and soon you will likely break the blues. a “downer. just go ahead and act happy and up. Greenwald called that “paradoxical intention. yours. That works for most people. and consequences. choices. Once in a while. Yes. clinical depression requires some really good professional help. Be precise. try to blush. Blues. Again. Want to be a leader? Have friends? Be happy? Be upbeat? If you are not happy. and always will be. enjoy the fruits of your 30-second decision to change your life. You will likely control it. Not many people want to be with a grump. Appendix to Chapter 7 Based on the framework in this book. so keep the discipline and understand that others have not made the same lifeinvigorating and life-changing decisions you have. It belongs to you. The decision is. here are a few more related pieces of potentially useful advice: Blushing. You are what you do and decide based on change. They think differently. Remember that there are no shortcuts to any place worth going to. Want to stop blushing? Next time you are concerned that you will blush (and you don’t want to) try to blush. Ted Blau suggested that happi- . downers. Take control of your life and your future. or worse. Of course. and most will remain stuck in mediocrity. and be rigorous.Chapter 7. And you now have the concepts and tools to never be mediocre. and depression.” or someone who is always seeing the negative parts of life. they act differently.

using the broken line labeled 6. 5. no need (gap in results). As noted earlier in Chapter 6. .6 You can’t hurt anyone’s feelings. Good advice then. They can show us the order of completing each function (just follow the forward arrows and read the numbers for the order and sequence). They choose the way they will respond to you. 4. Gleaned from several on-air observations provided by biologist and therapist Laura Schlessinger.136 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life ness is freedom from fear. This also shows. that revision can take place any time and at any place in the process. think about choosing a different partner or a different way of behaving. 6. These and perhaps other tidbits here might not be new. no problem. good advice now. 3. Wondering how to behave to be successful? Treat others as you want to be treated. Don’t lie or cover up if you don’t want others to lie or cover up. In love? Ask yourself. Worth noting is Viktor Frankl’s observation that it is not as much about what you expect from life as what life expects from you. No problem ceases to exist simply because we choose to ignore it. Thus. 2. Endnotes 1. costs-consequences analysis— what do you give and what do you get—is useful here. They are seen in the Rotary 4-Way Test and most mainstream bibles. “Is this worth dying for?” Procrastination. Flowcharts are convenient. Counselor JC Fikes suggests that when you are really worried and very anxious that you ask yourself based on the physical impact of extreme stress. Don’t own other people’s problems. “Is this the way love should feel?”5 If not. only act the way you would have others act.

St. 38 (1). (1966). F. S. W.. Drucker. Performance Improvement. R.. Davis. N. December). Post-capitalist society. & Stolovitch. They are provided for those who want to dig further into the bases and payoffs for making useful decisions that will deliver personal and work-place success. F.16 (3). A. (1993). 40 (2). Decisions. Human Factors. New York: John Wiley & Sons. (1976). (8428). (1998). Brethower. V. Videocassette. E. decisions: Game theory and you. CA: Fearon Publishers. The new business of paradigms (Classic Ed. Systems thinking (and systems doing). CEP Press.).. J. General systems theory. R. New York: George Braziller. The power of ethical management. (2005. F. MN: Star Thrower Distribution. Atlanta. R. New York: William Morrow & Co. (2003). (1968. E. The Economist.. (2002). Blanchard. Beals. Building nimble organizations. L. 87. P. D. GA. New York: Harper Business.Bibliography These are referenced and non-referenced resources. Condly. M. New York: W. Corrigan. D. (1968). Bell. C. & Coplans. L.. January). Management: Tasks. Performance Improvement Quarterly. R. I. The effects of incentives on workplace performance: A mata-analytic review of research studies. P. R. & Kaufman. R. The biggest contract. Norton. J. E. Bertalanffy. Clark. K. May 26). (1972). Why system engineering? Palo Alto. Deming. R. P. J. Resistance and adaptation to technological change: Some anthropological views. & Dams. E. Statistical Review. & Estes. D. New York: Harper & Row. Turning research into results: A guide to selecting the right performance solutions. 375. responsibilities. London. & Peale. Von. 215–219. W. 37–52. Drucker. (1973). (1988). (1999. Code of professional conduct. 1–24. Paul. practices. Conner. International. H. (2001).. Clark.. Barker. .

November–December). H. 7 (4). & Blanchard. The eden conspiracy: Educating for accomplished citizenship. Gilbert. E. 17–21. P. New York: McGraw-Hill. P. 5–10. Beyond certainty: The changing worlds or organisations. New York: Farrar. (1995–1996). January). R. R. . The five most important questions you will ever ask about your nonprofit organization. (2000. The Quality Magazine. New York: Avon Books. The Atlantic Monthly. Forbes. Drucker. B. (1982). Man's search for meaning: An introduction to logo-therapy. May). (1962). E. Frankl. Straus and Giroux. NJ: Prentice-Hall. The happy person: A seven step plan. Performance Improvement.. (1998). K. Guerra. On ethics. (1987. F. 53–80. H. H. Human competence: Engineering worthy performance. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers. Performance improvement based on results: Is our field interested in adding value? Performance Improvement. Kaufman. R. Newnan. (1973). Hersey. J. and performance products. Friedman. P.). Management of organizational behavior: Utilizing human resources (4th Ed. 40 (1). In Garratt. T. J. Wheaton. Inc. (1998. Boston: Beacon Press. The age of social transformation. August). Developing strategic thought: Discovering the art of directiongiving. New York: The Free Press. Juran.) (1995). London: McGraw-Hill Book Company. I. November). Handy.138 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Drucker. The two bottom lines: Let’s start to measure. J. Developing director and executive competencies in strategic thinking. (1988). (2005). Greenwald. V. Decision therapy. Harless. (1994. The world is flat: A brief history of the twenty-first century.. (2001. J. (1978). 6–10. IL: Guild V Publications. F. GA: Harless Performance Guild. Educational Technology. Juran on planning for quality.. 274 (5). New York: Peter Wyden. F. C. M. Greenwald. & Rich. T. An ounce of analysis is worth a pound of cure. Inc. 39 (10). L. science. London: Arrow Books Ltd. Farrington. (1995). (1984). Hanford. P. (ed. Harless. Englewood Cliffs. & Clark. (1975). (1993). Snake oil.

Strategic thinking: A guide to identifying and solving problems. 14–18.Bibliography 139 Kaufman. W. A. R. New York: McGraw-Hill. Change creation and change management: Partners in human performance improvement. 2003 Team and Organization Development Sourcebook. Kaufman. Kaufman. A.C. S. (1991. Kaufman. (1999.. Kaufman. What performance improvement experts must and can learn from tragedy. & Carron." Journal of Instructional Development. Armonk.: Jointly published by the American Society for Training & Development and the International Society for Performance Improvement. D. Kaufman. Editorial Centros de Estudios Ramon Areces. D. Journal of Socio-Economic Planning Sciences. Kaufman.) Viable utopian ideas: Shaping a better world. Performance Improvement. VA & Washington. D. Sharpe. Corrigan. 23–26. A. S. Re-establishing performance improvement as a legitimate area of inquiry. (2000). (2003).. R.. 151–157. Utopia and the attempted flow of useful ideas: Why being able to define and measure a clear vision matters. (1969). (1998). & Lick. 13–18. (2003). NY: M. Kaufman. 4 (1).. New York: McGrawHill. May/June). 38 (9). A. Thousand Oaks. R. R. R. The mainstream. R. Arlington. R. R. In Shostak. R. and contribution: Rules of the road. Kaufman. R. R. (1980). Towards educational responsiveness to society's needs: A tentative utility model. . Kaufman. Performance & Instruction Journal. activity. A. published in Spanish: El Pensamiento Estrategico: Una Guia Para Identificar y Resolver los Problemas. & Forbes. Does your organization contribute to society? 2002 Team and Organization Development Sourcebook..E. 213–224. (ed. Madrid. (2002). CA: Sage Publications. Also.. (Winter 2000–2001). Utility and self-sufficiency in the Selection of Educational Alternatives. Mega planning: Practical tools for organizational success. (Revised Ed. 3. R. & Johnson. & Clark. R. Performance in Practice: 8–9. E. October).).

(1998. (1997). and payoffs. Silver Spring. PA: Proactive Publishers. W. New York: Warner. Practical strategic planning: Aligning people. and accomplishing. Kuhn. (1997). Serious performance consulting: According to Rummler. prioritizing. G. Watkins. N.. The changing corporate mind: Organizations. L. CA: Corwin Press.. Performance Improvement Quarterly.. 10 (3). The fortune at the bottom of the pyramid: Eradicating poverty through profits.. Triner. Kaufman. Sprague. R. Maslow. Kaufman. (1987).. CA: Jossey-Bass/Pfeiffer. 32–44. San Francisco. F.). Useful educational results: Defining. Motivation and personality. Kaufman.. Costs-consequences analysis. R. Performance Improvement. (1993). NJ: Wharton School Publishing/Pearson Education. Costs-consequences analysis: A primer. Leadership secrets of Attila the Hun.. R. 48. . (2001). 37 (4). A. Sims. GA: Center for Effective Performance. R. Victory secrets of Attila the Hun. purposes. The structure of scientific revolutions (2nd Ed.. D. (1954). visions.. and indicators on the move toward societal payoffs. R. Roberts. Watkins. Thousand Oaks. M. & Stith. Oakley-Browne. Inc.. R. Performance Improvement Quarterly. Mager. 11. Prahalad. R. Preparing instructional objectives: A critical tool in the development of effective instruction (3rd Ed. April).. MD: International Society for Performance Improvement and the American Society for Training and Development. (1998). R. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. & Leigh. (2003).140 30 Seconds That Can Change Your Life Kaufman. Roberts. D. H. Rummler. performance. C. & Zahn. (2004). & Leigh. (1970).). mission. (3). New York: Doubleday. Lancaster. D. (2005).. Quality management plus: The continuous improvement of education. D. Watkins. D. Atlanta. K. M. A. (1993). D. R. Kaufman... R. & Leigh.. Upper Saddle River.. Crispo. R. Muir. W. T. 8–17. Kaufman. New York: Harper & Row. Watkins. R. Watkins. 7–21.

R. The fifth discipline: The art & practice of the learning organization. 37 (7). (1990). M. Kaufman. 35 (4). Watkins. (1998... Watkins. 17–22. R. A performance accomplishment code of professional conduct. Needs assessment: A digest.Bibliography 141 Senge. (2000. D. and comparison of needs assessment literature. P. and Leigh. R. . Leigh. New York: Doubleday-Currency. Performance Improvement. R. April). review.. September). 40–53. D. Performance Improvement.. & Kaufman.

.

needs assessment. and a Fellow in Educational Psychology of the American Psychological Association. Kaufman has published 36 books and over 235 articles on strategic planning. Kaufman consults with public and private organizations in the United States. performance improvement. management. New Zealand. sociology. His Ph.About the Author Roger Kaufman is professor emeritus. and evaluation. Latin and Central America. and Director of Roger Kaufman & Associates as well as Distinguished Research Professor at the Sonora Institute of Technology. performance improvement. quality management and continuous improvement. Gilbert Award. He has been awarded the International Society for Performance Improvement’s (ISPI’s) top two honors: Member for Life and the Thomas F. and psychotherapy. Kaufman has previously served as a professor at Chapman University and the US International University (now Alliant International University) where he began his continuing education on the relationships among psychology. strategic thinking. He is a Certified Performance Technologist. . a Diplomat in School Psychology.D. Australia. Canada. is in communications from New York University. Florida State University. He is a past ISPI president and a founding member and is the recipient of the American Society for Training and Development’s (ASTD’s) Distinguished Contribution to Workplace Learning and Performance recognition. and Europe.