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Steve Hoy

Risk & Uncertainty - Introduction

Four posts I made yesterday relate to Risk & Uncertainty. Here's the main theme and the order in which to read them.

Coin Tossing

Understanding the difference between risk and uncertainty should lead to more careful thought about the consequences of our decisions, including that outcomes will be unknowable most of the time. This can be hard to accept, especially in Business.

Physics Envy

Economics and Business are poorly served by the overuse of confusing jargon and mathematics to seem more rigorous than is actually possible. Many try to reduce these fuzzy subjects to formulae and frameworks, and while this can help understanding, more often it is just a veneer of nonsense over something unknowable.

Known Knowns

The nature of knowledge and ignorance is a serious philosophical problem; for decision-makers, it is a gnarly practical one too. Making important decisions in the face of uncertainty is unsettling and difficult. Few are up to the task.

What To Do?

Since it is not possible to measure uncertainty in quantitative terms, positioning is the correct response. Have a strategy, and be prepared for the next big thing.

Coming Up

I'll write some more on Strategy. There is much fluff passing for strategy in all walks of life, but it's especially rife in Business. I'll then start focussing on one of my areas of expertise - Partnerships.