On the Button! – Tip #273

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I admit it – I am an Olympics junkie.  So much so, that I know that the games don’t really begin with the opening ceremonies.  No, the competitions actually begin a couple of days earlier with preliminary rounds, training runs, and the like, which is how I found myself awake in the early morning hours, two days before the Olympic kickoff extravaganza.

Watch curling.

It was a riveting, opening round, mixed doubles match between Australia and the United States, literally decided on the last stone of the match.

For those who only watch this niche sport every four years, if you can imagine shuffleboard on ice, then you have the gist of what’s happening.  It involves a lot of strategic planning and positioning, deciding where to slide the stone, how to curve (or curl) the stone by brushing the ice, and determining the speed at which the stone should be released in the first place.  While there is most certainly skill involved in this endeavor, it also requires a fair amount of trial and error.

Trial and error?  Now that’s something I CAN relate to!

Trial and error thinking is a cornerstone (no pun intended) of decision-making.  We do it every day, often without thinking.  However, being intentional about integrating this thinking into our toolkit is where the magic happens in our work lives.  Engaging in testing, trial and error work helps us go deeper to validate the results of our thinking far beyond just asking the question, “I wonder if…?”  

We can discover measurable results which lead to solutions or just as valuable, we discover what doesn’t work, engaging in trial-and-error testing again to learn even more.  Situation Expert provides a straightforward and simple-to-integrate tool that guides you through the process of testing to help achieve measurable results.

So the next time a curler pushes off of the hack, releasing their stone toward the house, past the hog line, hoping to land it closest to the button to score a point, consider all the testing, trial and error involved and smile, because you and a curler aren’t so very different from one another. 


Jonathan Workman

Ray Jimenez, PhD
Vignettes Learning
“Helping Learners Learn Their Way”

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