Corporate Finance, DeFi, Blockchain, Web3 News
Corporate Finance, DeFi, Blockchain News

Who are more effective – Specialists or Generalists?

In the book The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us and What We Can Do About It (link below), the author Joshua Cooper Ramo makes us think if specialists or generalists are more effective at understanding the future.

Gary Cokins
Gary Cokins
A study described in the book evaluated short-term predictions five years after they were made from hundreds of experts in economics and foreign policy. It compared the accuracy of their predictions with the actual results to generalists who typically think and analyze more broadly. You can probably guess the outcome. The generalists tended to be far more accurate.

The book takes a position that today’s complex, interconnected and globalized world requires analysts who challenge traditional thinking and assumptions. Pragmatists are more likely to look at a bigger picture combined with their intuition to consider and suggest solutions to problems. Changes do not always occur in incremental sequences because disruptive forces and events, some unanticipated, imply non-traditional reactions.

Effective business analytics and enterprise performance management requires analysts and leaders who possess creative thinking and curiosity – similar to the generalists. Business analytics software, such as offered by my employer SAS, can provide the stimulation that aids in thinking of problems differently. The correct decisions involving risk and profit become increasingly difficult to make because they are linked in complex ways that are not obvious to see. It will not get simpler. Uncertainty is a given, and with increasing competency with applying analytics by skilled individuals within an organization, then better decisions and actions can be the result.

The Age of the Unthinkable: Why the New World Disorder Constantly Surprises Us And What We Can Do About It

Gary Cokins, CPIM
(; phone: 919-531-2012)

Gary Cokins (Cornell University BS IE/OR, 1971; Northwestern University Kellogg MBA 1974) is an internationally recognized expert, speaker, and author in advanced cost management and enterprise performance and risk management systems. He is a Principal in business consulting involved with analytics-based enterprise performance management solutions with SAS, a global leader in business intelligence and analytics software. He began his career in industry with a Fortune 100 company in CFO and operations roles. He then worked 15 years in consulting with Deloitte, KPMG, and EDS. His two most recent books are Performance Management: Finding the Missing Pieces to Close the Intelligence Gap (ISBN 0-471-57690-5) and Performance Management: Integrating Strategy Execution, Methodologies, Risk, and Analytics (ISBN 978-0-470-44998-1). Mr. Cokins can be contacted at gary.
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Mercredi 7 Décembre 2011

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