Cracking Complexity: This is how you solve your toughest problems with David Komlos & David Benjamin


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In this episode we discuss how you can get smarter in a complex and complicated world. How do you deal with confusing and difficult situations? How do you work through some of your life’s most complex problems? In a world of accelerating change, how do you accelerate the quest for wisdom and creativity? We share simple, powerful, solutions you can use to handle complexity in this interview with our guests David Komlos and David Benjamin.David Komlos and David Benjamin - they are the CEO and CTO respectively of the company Syntegrity. Mr. Komlos is an expert coach for leaders on solving their issues. He advises top leaders and enterprises on how to dramatically accelerate solutions and execution on their defining challenges. Mr. Benjamin leads Syntegrity’s lab and client delivery organization. He has been recognized internationally for his work on global strategic planning with top executives in Fortune 500 companies.
  • What is complexity? Why is it so important to be able to handle complexity in today’s world?
  • How is complex different than complicated?
  • Experts can help solve complicated challenges, but not necessarily complex challenges
  • Complex challenges are multi-dimensional and human.
  • What are some basic mental models for sorting complex challenges vs complicated challenges?
  • Ask yourself:
    • Has this been solved before? And how was it solved?
    • Would this problem have been the same 5 years ago or 5 years from now?
  • Complex challenges don’t have a recipe or a discreet playbook to be solved
  • Planning a wedding is complicated, having a happy marriage is complex
  • Building a fence is complicated, being a good neighbor is complex
  • The Law of Requisite Variety / Ashby’s Law
    • "Only variety can destroy variety"
    • You can only solve complex challenges by bringing an equal amount of variety to a challenge
    • When we are facing tough complex challenges - we need a variety of experience and expertise
  • “A Lion In Your Office"
  • Often a BIG chunk of the challenge is just SEEING the problem in its entirety
  • An ounce of information is worth a pound of data. An ounce of knowledge is worth a pound of information. An ounce of understanding is worth a pound of knowledge. An ounce of wisdom is worth a pound of understanding.
  • Shared understanding is essential - but we often rush to action before we get there
  • We need FAST Wisdom and CREATIVE Judgement to solve our biggest challenges in today’s world - but wisdom takes a lifetime
  • How do you accelerate the quest for wisdom and solve the world’s toughest and most complex challenges?
  • Complexity is the defining challenge we face in todays’ world
  • How do you engineer Fast Wisdom?
  • The framework you can use to engineer “fast wisdom” and solve tough, complex challenges
  • N*N-1 Mental Model and how to create “collaborative collisions”
  • The ideal number of a group of people to work in a group is 5-8 people - you can have very creative and effective collisions
  • How you can create groups to crunch through tough, complex challenges - by using this specific formula
    • Observers
    • Critics
    • Members
  • How do you ask good questions when looking to solve tough challenges?
  • Homework: Think about a dinner party. What question will guide the conversation in the right way? Who would you invite to create variety?

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