Most folks who read this blog are in white collar jobs and since the begining of this last decade have been relentlessly bombarded by the trifecta bingo of AI, Automation and Analytics. I dare you to visit the latest feed on LinkedIn and not hit the words in 30 seconds of scrolling.
Everyone of consequence in the corporate hierarchy is focussed on learning about, deploying and getting on top of the buzzwords surrounding these three above. The dominant feeling for a lot of us is akin to a horse trainer at the turn of the last century who is only now slowly realizing the newthingamajing this guy Ford is making out there in Michigan is not just a fad.
For those who feel there MUST be an alternative specialization to the dry world that the 3 A’s are hinting at, there is. DECISION MAKING. If there is ever a vote for ‘the most neglected subject I wish I had been really drilled on and into while in college’ I would handsdown vote : BASICS OF GOOD DECISION MAKING (& BIASES THAT TRIP IT).
To say this is a rich subject is an understatement!
When you strip all the superflous layers away (College Credentials, Skin Color, Gender, Looks, Wardrobe, Accent) what really gets rewarded in a truly meritocratic workplace (and organization and society) is a person’s ability to make repeated good decisions. An HBS/IIT grad who has a poor track record of DECISION MAKING will, in the long run, do worse than a MOOC/Distance Learning Grad who hones his ability and track record of good decisions made. Munger gave the best tip on it too : Make life easier by making intial good decisions.
So now I believe this is That Most Critical of All Skills in the coming decades. We live in a world that, if it rewards anything, rewards better decisions. The rest is increasingly automated.