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Process Over Predictions

Process Over Predictions

December 17, 2018

As we round out 2018 and look ahead to 2019 (and beyond), the number of grand predictions and opinions are prevalent and growing. For the pundits and tea leaf reading experts, the opportunity to give out “rationalized” predictions of the future is typically rooted in the form of selling a narrative or confirming a bias. What should be recognized is that predictions are a bet - just one scenario that has a probability to play out in the future. Typically, the association to one prediction is limiting in the sense that it narrows the focus to only one individual outcome; although, when looked at rationally, this naturally decreases your ability to position optimally for the unforeseeable future. What is a guarantee, however, is that the future is unknown and ultimately out of your control. So, in planning for the road ahead, the focus should be on the controllable and envisioning many scenarios over the long term. 

For example, a successful sports team or athlete would not prepare to face an opponent on just a few predictions of how the match MAY play out. The coach and players have been preparing all year long, through pre-season and in-season training, focusing on the elements they themselves can control and considering numerous potential outcomes. The same can be said when a special op’s team is deploying on a specific mission. the person in command has planned for unforeseen circumstances and many varying scenarios. By exploring uncertainty when the unexpected happens, the team can utilize fundamentals, processes and take the appropriate action. This is something which would have been drilled repeatedly in training and mission preparation (perfecting the controllable and minimizing unfamiliarity). What this all comes down to is process! Process is a habit, it is adjustable and ultimately the basis for planning and executing.

So understand predictions are opinions. Opinions that are generally self-confirming narratives that you have no control over. What you do have the capability to control is information gathering, knowledge building, practice, planning, and execution. Investing in this process allows you the capacity to be prepared for action and not hang your hat on a few noisy predictions.