Decision Making – Scope

Once upon a time, there was a team of German and American professionals who were tasked with making a complex decision that would impact their organization. The Germans approached the decision-making process systematically, taking into account the broader context and interconnecting factors. They saw the decision as a web of interconnected choices that needed to be made simultaneously.

On the other hand, the Americans preferred to break down the complexity into its component parts and focus on what was essential. They saw the decision as a series of sequential choices that needed to be made one at a time. They were wary of interconnecting too many decisions, as it might lead to confusion and a lack of focus.

The Germans found the American approach too impatient and narrow-minded, as they believed that it overlooked important factors and did not take into account the broader context. Meanwhile, the Americans found the German approach too complicated and time-consuming, as they believed that it included too many non-critical factors and was overly systematic.

To overcome these differences, the team sought advice on how to approach the decision-making process more effectively. The Germans were advised to remain systematic but be more pragmatic, focusing on the truly relevant factors while keeping the peripheral factors within their vision. They were encouraged to narrow the overall scope of their understanding of the problem and avoid getting bogged down in the interconnected factors.

The Americans, on the other hand, were advised to engage with their German colleagues in their philosophical discussion about the nature of the decision to be made. They were encouraged to broaden their perspective and take into account the interconnected factors that the Germans were considering. They were also advised to help their German colleagues narrow the scope of the decision-making process when it became too systematic and time-consuming.

With this advice, the team learned to appreciate each other’s decision-making styles and found a way to work together more effectively. The Germans became more pragmatic in their approach, while the Americans learned to appreciate the value of a broader perspective. In the end, they made a well-informed decision that considered both the broader context and the essential factors, and their collaboration improved significantly.