Secret Powers of Time

A subtle lesson in the power of time, what it means to us and the way we observe the world. In my next podcast, I have a discussion with Dr. Terry Barnhart on John Boyd’s OODA Loop. The second O, orientation – is the repository of our genetic heritage, cultural tradition, and previous experiences and is the most important part of the OODA loop since it shapes the way we observe, the way we decide, the way we act. See how time affects are Orientation?

From Wikpedia: The OODA loop (for observe, orient, decide, and act) is a concept originally applied to the combat operations process, often at the strategic level in both the military operations. It is now also often applied to understand commercial operations and learning processes. The concept was developed by military strategist and USAF Colonel John Boyd.

Dr. Barnhart made this observation after our podcast about Observation:

If you think, even for a moment, about isolation in companies, you see it EVERYWHERE. The corner office is a deliberate form of isolation. Offices are isolationist to the extent that people use them. Going to the Gemba, however, restarts observation. Those observations are never quite what we expect, hence we immediately begin the process of orientation change. The most interesting fellow I have heard about was Soichiro Honda, who would walk around his plants in Honda whites, and talk to people, pick up trash on the floor, etc. Many people did not know what he looked like, so he would often get raw views of how his company operated. He had no separation between himself and his company, hence it was difficult to blind him to the barriers and opportunities present.

As technology increases and our virtual communication skills or maybe our control skills(from the video above) get better and better, what will that do to our orientation, our observations? Will Gemba still be important?

About: Dr. Terry Barnhart is the Senior Director Strategy and Continuous Improvement at Pfizer Global R&D and currently does research, facilitate, study and teach the improvement of R&D and management performance through the design and implementation of fast-learning systems. His passion is the development of Lean interventions for durable, break-through (2x or better) performance improvements in creative environments

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