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We need to defend how we came to a decision, not what the decision was.
I like the OODA principle that
If you Observed well
And you can show how you Oriented those observations to policy and mission
Then the Decision you took and the consequent Actions are justified.
People are too often called on to justify their decision because of the eventual outcome. It’s a shame to work in a culture where that is true
Especially, it’s a shame that almost all public servants are afraid, because the public – and in particular the media- are so brutal. This destruction of psychological safety makes it almost impossible for the civil service to move. But the paralysis is everywhere. People are afraid to make bad decisions because of the consequences of the outcomes. The paralysis is a major issue in many organisations.