The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

Look at my solution

The article I was reading was interesting. It was describing some research on sensemaking capabilities that complemented the thinking I had been doing recently. The article highlighted how sensemaking has become a more challenging task than it has been in the past. This seems quite natural to me. But is also evolved. Take the fact that the flow of information has grown exponentially, that business seems to impose an incredible speed on the work we do, and that the amount of stakeholders involved contributes to the complexity of the task. Putting it into the business context of growing uncertainty the article described the work the researchers had done to help people make better decisions using a clear sensemaking process.

But it also did something else. It was presenting the solution the researchers had developed.

That’s where the article transformed itself from being an article inviting the reader to make sense of the given content to one telling them how to act. Which is somewhat ironic. And yet, it is the way people often try to persuade others to implement the solution they are trying to sell. It’s a way that resembles the market crier who needs to be the loudest on the market to have a chance to be heard.

They could also have searched for a way to connect with an audience interested enough in the topic to also want to engage with them. In that case, my best guess is that this would have worked by letting the reader use the described sensemaking process. This approach will still inform all the readers. But it also helps some readers to recognize that the process serves their needs and that the writer sees them.

It’s the difference between “look at my solution” and “I think that this is a solution that can serve you”.


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