THE BLOG

Uncertainty: Are You Empowered or Disarmed by Ambiquity?

08/09/2012 04:10 pm ET | Updated Oct 09, 2012

Do you embrace uncertainty or run from it? Does ambiguity motivate you or cause you frustration and discomfort?

Most people are more comfortable in conditions that are clear. Unfortunately, that's rarely the case these days. The new normal is anything but stability. Most often we're operating in situations that are shifting, changing, even disruptive.

If you have the power to stick with it, I believe that working through uncertainty has great benefits. That's where learning is possible. That's where breakthroughs come from. That's where magic happens.

Think about it. If we had all the answers would we be as motivated to explore the edges of what's possible? Would we be as thrilled to discover what doesn't work? Would we attain the valuable learning that comes from mistakes, miscues, and misjudgments?

If we were always dealing with certainty we just might stagnate. We might not innovate as much. We might not take as many risks. We might not be as curious. We would no longer be driven to test hypotheses or beliefs. We wouldn't root for the challenger because there would be no underdog.

If everything were a sure thing we just might lose our spark, our insight, our drive.

What if you embraced the notion of rapidly and systematically reducing uncertainty? Would that give us the confidence to explore, take risks and execute against our conclusions? It just might.

The power to be less uncertain is realistic and within reach. We have access to tons of information. We have intelligent data gathering and analytics tools. We have sophisticated modeling software. We have super smart algorithms. But, most of all, we have the curious and intelligent mind of the innovator - the free thinker that pushes the edges of what's already known. Now that's a power to nurture.

One company that practices this science and art is Process Systems Enterprise (PSE). PSE practices the science and art of reducing uncertainty in a new industry category called Advanced Process Modeling. The combination of software, knowledge libraries, and industry experience enables PSE to help its clients make smarter, faster and safer decisions -- decisions that can result in multiple millions of dollars worth of savings, profits, or revenue. By rapidly and systematically reducing uncertainty, PSE enables its clients to know more, so they can do more sooner.

The power to be certain is alluring, but the process of reducing uncertainty is rich. Remember the aging baseball player in the play/movie -- Damn Yankees? He wanted to be young and powerful again so he sold his soul to the devil in exchange for his youth. It didn't take long before he regretted making that trade. He might have been young again, but he lost the richness he acquired from the test of time.

Don't wish for certainty. Dig into the process of discovering how to make things less uncertain.

Thomas Butta