Internet notebook about my work: deep listening to facilitate positive change


Sunday 23 March 2008

Analysis Paralysis

“One of the biggest challenges leaders have is to ensure that preparation and analysis add real value and provide the framework for action. The biggest enemy to action is analysis paralysis.” I read in ‘Ten ways Leaders Overcome Analysis Paralysis’ by Andrew Cox. “Analysis paralysis is the graveyard of many organizations and careers. It's procrastination - on both the organizational and individual level - caused by fear of failure, fear of consequences, fear of not being thorough, fear of making a mistake.” This very much applies to the situation I find at my client’s organization. Their focus is on complexity not on simple actions. They want to know everything before they act. They do not know the ‘Principle of Good Enough’. They spend months to write a ‘partnership strategy’. The result is a document with too many choices. So in the end no action is taken. In the same way they scrutinize my communication quick scan and question every detail. My conclusions meet with a range of historical explanations, aslmost as an excuse that change is not possible. They skip over my simple recommendations. To avoid any further procrastination in improving their communications, I frame my advice to the next management meeting solely in ideal outcomes and actions to get there, including the time, budget and resources needed.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Analysis Paralysis is quite a dangerous concept. It is often the death of ideas, progress and many-a-company and career.

On my blog at I have recently wrote a few posts that may be helpful in this discussion. First I did one on the ten positive traits of successful leaders vs. the ten negative traits of failed leaders,

and then I have entered the battle grounds against Procrasti-Nation - you need to join in the battle!