Posted on:Jul 212011
A colleague expressed surprise when I lamented that managers often ignore the long-term consequences of their decisions. Her response was that most decisions are made in the face of immediate and pressing issues, and these are exactly what people should pay most attention to. Clearly, on one level she is right—ignoring immediacy is dangerous. However, focusing only on the pressing problem is an invitation to unintended and unforeseen consequences in the future. Ensuring an effective response to the immediate concern while weighing long-term consequences is not a trivial task. Today’s business environment is complex. No one can predict long-term consequences with accuracy, and few managerial positions come with a crystal ball.