Barry Schwartz on our loss of wisdom
This is one of my favorite video’s ever because it addresses the two core issues that are causing the decline of our society and the demoralization of our workforce. We are no longer the community of thinkers we once were. We are fast becoming a community of manipulative rule makers and this is sapping our ability to trust and be truly creative in solving our problems. This is true in business and in government. Rarely if ever do we find the solution to even a simple problem in more rules and the introduction of complexity. If we could solve our problems by creating complex rules and incentives for people we would have solved all of them and all of us would be wealthy beyond belief by now.
Open environments that encourage creativity and depend on our basic human nature to do the right thing is the basis for all our solutions, public and private. Barry Schwartz explains this in the following TED video. The video was made in 2009 and he makes a number of references to statements made by Obama. It is interesting to compare Obama’s statements to the governance we have experienced.
In my travels I have the privilege to visiting a diversity of businesses. There are still many that operate with a heavy reliance on wisdom and trust in human nature to develop great products and provide exceptional services. These companies large and small are almost always leaders in their respective industries and communities. They seem to thrive in good and bad economic environments. The difference is trust and the freedom they grant to their managers, employees and suppliers to work together to solve problems in a creative and effective way. We often refer to these organizations as bottom-up companies.
I do my best to run my business focused these values just as many of you do.
It’s worth the 20 minutes. I hope you enjoy Barry Schwartz speaking on our loss of wisdom.