Selling Science

From a talk on carrying out successful research by Richard Hamming, a distinguished American mathematician and computer theorist: “While going to meetings I had already been studying why some papers are remembered and most are not. The technical person wants to give a highly limited technical talk. Most of the time the audience wants aContinue reading “Selling Science”

A Key To Problem Solving

I came across this interesting tweet from @theresiatanzil: “The difficult part of problem solving is rarely about coming up with the solution, but rather 1) getting people to agree what the problem is,2) which solution we decide to try,3) how to coordinate and work together to solve it, and4) committing to keep it solved.” It’sContinue reading “A Key To Problem Solving”

How To Achieve Great Things

“To achieve great things, two things are needed: a plan, and not quite enough time.” – Leonard Bernstein Regarding the latter point, it’s insightful that when a tight deadline is sprung on you, it’s easy to figure out what’s critical and what isn’t (OK we’re not talking about great things here, but often quite importantContinue reading “How To Achieve Great Things”

James Dyson’s Best Advice

From an article in Fortune on the entrepreneur James Dyson: “My father died when I was 9, and I remember doing the household chores to help my mother. I loathed changing the vacuum cleaner bag and picking up things the machine didn’t suck up. Thirty years later, in 1979, I was doing chores at home alongsideContinue reading “James Dyson’s Best Advice”

The Importance Of A Plan B

I’m a bit of a sucker for reading business books. At least in my experience, they rarely say anything startlingly new, more often point out one aspect that may be overlooked or perhaps misunderstood and then give lots of examples for context. Nevertheless saying the same things over and again is still useful as quiteContinue reading “The Importance Of A Plan B”

The Paradox of Unanimity

I’ve been on lots of committees; for projects, bids and also charity work. So, I was interested to come across this (see here): Under ancient Jewish law, if a suspect on trial was unanimously found guilty by all judges, then the suspect was acquitted. This reasoning sounds counterintuitive, but the legislators of the time hadContinue reading “The Paradox of Unanimity”

The Wisest One In The Room

I came across this powerful story whilst skimming through the Preface to “The Wisest One in the Room (How to Harness Psychology’s Most Powerful Insights)” by Thomas Gilovich & Lee Ross: In late spring 1944, Allied forces were making final preparations for the momentous events of D-Day, the landing of troops on the five beachesContinue reading “The Wisest One In The Room”

Project Review Experiments

My friend, David Gurteen, who is a major name in the field of knowledge management, has recently proposed an interesting variation on the idea of post project reviews. After most projects there is a review of sorts with the aim of learning from the experience, for the individuals and team involved but also (hopefully) forContinue reading “Project Review Experiments”

Starting Projects Through Fiddling

I often start projects through fiddling around with bits and pieces of ideas and approaches I’ve previously developed. However some of these activities don’t always lead to anything substantial, just other bits and pieces. This can be fun and enlightening but I often think I’d feel better about the time and effort I put inContinue reading “Starting Projects Through Fiddling”