INSTANT MBA: Don't Think In 'Or' When You Can Think In 'And'

Business Insider

Today's advice comes from our interview with David-Michel Davies, executive director of The Webby Awards and the International Academy of Digital Arts & Sciences, and co-founder of Internet Week New York:

“I think all people have this natural bias in thinking in ‘or,' in absolutes, that something is either good or bad, we should do it this way or that way, and it’s become a crutch.” 

Many people are trapped in the single-mindedness of thinking in absolutes, which Davies calls “the tyranny of ‘or.’” Such a rigid mentality is unnecessarily restricting, he says, and most don’t realize that when given the choice between two ideas, solutions to a problem, or even job candidates, sometimes you don’t have to choose at all.

Davies gives the example of looking at two options to raise capital for a new company. Rather than picking this option or that option, if you pursue both you might find that each option gives you different outcomes and you would limit these options by having to choose between the two.

“A lot of times you get presented with choices, and a lot of times you can substitute ‘and’ for ‘or’, and the options are much better.”

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