October 02, 2012

You Can't Fix It If You Don't Know What It Is

"We are more prone to generalize the bad than the good."

Eric Hoffer
20th century American philosopher

And in doing so we minimize the chance to fix things.

You won't often resolve problems if you don't first understand what they are.


  1. I work at a company that does not do a good job of acknowledging their weaknesses. I take it this is what you mean by "generalize the bad".

    But can you go too far with that, over emphasizing negative things?

  2. You can go too far with anything and that happens quite a bit. You want balance between focusing on what's right and wrong.

    However this quote's message is slightly different. The suggestion is to be as specific as possible when thinking about both the good and the bad, in my opinion, particularly the bad. Don't leave it at "We have a customer relations issue." Be specific as to which customers in addition to what is wrong.