In Praise of Randomness

This was just too choice to not pass on to y’all. Those of you who work in the corporate world, anyway.

The savvier consultants and their clients understand that the basis of the business is not technological but anthropological – and that this is not always a bad thing. Among human beings, it turns out, the perception of expertise, however unfounded, can sometimes be used to good purpose. As the shamans who poison chickens and the soothsayers who read entrails have long demonstrated, sometimes it is more important to build a consensus around a good decision than to make the best possible decision; sometimes it is more useful to believe that a decision is sanctioned by a higher authority than to acknowledge that it rests on mere conjecture; and sometimes it is better to make a truly random choice than to continue to follow the predictable inclinations of one’s established prejudices. Consultants, following in the footsteps of their pagan forebears, understand that they must adopt the holy mien of a priestly caste.

Excerpted from The Management Myth: Management Consulting Past, Present and Largely Bogus by Matthew Stewart

Via Good Morning Silicon Valley

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