Understanding and considering different perspectives is vital to coming to a properly considered major decision. Prof David A. Garvin reinforces the concept in this short video article from the Harvard Business Review.
In our experience, the message gets forgotten in the day-to-day melee that is corporate life. When we teach (or employ) creative and contrarian techniques with our clients, they invariably start the journey as sceptics and finish as converts to the value of taking an outside or alternative look at the problem, project or decision they are grappling with.
Taking a wider, external view helps not just with decision-making, but also with project management. An often cited problem with major projects is a lack of understanding and proper engagement with all the relevant stakeholders. Focusing too rigidly on the requirements of the internal and the obvious players far too often means missing something vital (and ultimately costly) that could have been recognised early in the process through looking at it from a different, external perspective.
So why does this work? By using highly creative or most aptly contrarian techniques you can escape the narrow frame of reference you often find yourself in. By forcing this contrary point of view the issue in question must be tackled in a completely different way. This will allow you a more nuanced, deeper understanding of your position. In addition to the theory explained, we believe that for the very best results these contrarian techniques must be supported by a structured analysis and via a rigorous challenge methodology.
By placing a supportive framework around a creative technique you end up with a real winning formula! Try it, or if you're still unsure... Call us and we will help you see what you have been missing if you use only one frame of reference.