Thursday, August 24, 2006

Analysis Through Action

There is a condition known as the Ph.D Syndrome in which the victim never completes the doctoral thesis because there is always one more theory to explore or fact to track down. The quest for perfection becomes paralyzing and the person is doomed to a never-ending task.

We live in a world of information overload. There are reports upon reports and any gaps are filled by a legion of experts. The multitude of counselors has become a chattering herd. The ability to sort out the truly meaningful from the mountains of fluff and dreck is more valuable than ever.

It all goes back to the old balance between analysis and action and yet, in many circumstances, our best analysis comes from action. Ten minutes in a boxing ring with a formidable opponent will teach you more than ten months spent pondering books about boxing.

As the maxim goes, "The best is the enemy of the good." Any review of history will reveal that more advances have been made by people in search of pretty good than by those in search of excellence.

The deciding point may be that the former know when to ship the product, launch the invasion, or wrap up the doctoral thesis while the also-rans are still running and re-running the numbers.

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