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Intelligent Disobedience (ID) is somewhat a new approach to problem-solving and decision making. Given that our established paradigms run our lives, the paradigms of our thinking are formalised in policies and procedures that ensure our paradigms are safely locked in, that everyone knows this is what and how we think. That we will think within and through that lens, locking any ideas outside, out! This is also the basis of group and pre-emptive think – the two cancers of thinking.

The opportunity then is in making thinking ‘outside’ safe to do; in fact, making it unsafe to only consider thoughts inside. That’s Intelligent Disobedience BUT it needs a safe encouraging environment to flourish.

I have used Edward deBono thinking such as the Six Thinking Hats to do this successfully in the past. The application of various hats outside those being accessed by individuals, even requiring identification of solutions that come from different hats to demonstrate to people that there are different ways to solve a specific problem, open a new opportunity. Another deBono saying is ‘always look for three answers, don’t be satisfied with one or two – in my experience the big answers are outside the paradigm, outside the competition; Intelligent Disobedience supports this.

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