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[SF企业管理国际资料]焦点解决取向管理21:学会如何在复杂环境中简单回应(上)

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Mark McKergow & Michael Hjerth


学会如何在复杂环境中简单回应(上)


关键词

简单,练习,高雅,实用主义者,花道,史蒂夫··沙泽。

摘要

简单是史蒂夫··沙泽的工作和SF方法中的一个关键要素。然而,将这种理念传递给管理者并不是一件容易的事情。此章节中,Mark  McKergow Michael Hjerth将会介绍一些活动,引导大家探讨去开发简单理念在SF运用过程中的应用,帮助参与者对这一理念有更多的思考,并将这些理念传递给正在学习SF的管理者。

前言


简单是史蒂夫··沙泽的工作和SF方法中的一个关键要素。茵素··柏格称史蒂夫是“手持奥卡姆剃刀的人”。一小步的行动、最小程度的假设和谨慎使用语言是该方法论的核心理念。史蒂夫自己是众所周知的简易行动派,甚至把他的治疗师角色形容为沙泽笨蛋


然而,和客户示范简单的方法是一回事,但是讨论它会显得非常复杂(参照社会建构和维特根斯坦的语言游戏)。沙泽自己不太愿意讨论它,他在练习中是以严格著称的,对于那些他理解的使用语言不合理的,以及和SF实践无益的问题,常常以“我不知道”回应。这种方法是严密的,用行为鉴证语言。然而,我们观察到很多工作坊实践者对此感到迷惑,并觉得没有帮助。

简单


如果我们在词典中查找简单的定义,我们找到很多该词用法,例如数学中(一次不等式,不含一次以上次幂),医学上(骨折),财务上(单利而不是复利)。在这些应用中,我们可以发现简单的相关入门理念,不是复杂的、详尽的、装饰的或者牵连的。


在哲学领域中,简单的概念是和奥卡姆剃刀联系在一起的。这个原则第一次是14世纪被英国僧侣和学者William of Ocam定义的,经常被描述成:“切勿浪费较多东西去做用较少的东西同样可以做好的事情。”


这种说法可以在长久以来的哲学领域中见到。主流学院的思想中,那些老学究们更关注于找到关于这个世界的复杂诠释和它是如何运行的。越是复杂的思想,显得更聪明和更真实。William 反对这种说法,他的观点恰恰相反,最简单的思想,用最少的前提假设,与真相相符,即是最好的。这个原则是哲学的一部分,也是科学的一部分,直到今天仍如此。就像拿着剃刀,把过量的假设去掉,真理就显现出来了。


奥卡姆剃刀经常被误解。一个众所周知的例子,上帝论者坚信他们的观点:上帝创造一切,非常简单,因此是科学而正确的。科学家宣称这完全不是简单,假设一个无所不能的造物神存在是太大的一个跨度,特别是我们身处的世界可以被规则化描述,这些并不需要一个神。

简单如何对管理者有帮助?


在哲学和科学观念中,奥卡姆剃刀被用于消除不合理的假设以帮助确定不同假说和理论中有用的部分,用最简单的术语做最大化解释。在日常管理工作中,这个观念并不是忙碌的管理者们优先关注的,大多数的管理者更关心效率和效果。有人可能会说用最小的付出得到最多的收获。然而这两种考虑需要它们互不相悖。

SF工作中,简单就是用最少的谈话和最少的时间和资源来替换那些最多的意义。我们发现这个是受到管理者欢迎的。以科学的、哲学的规范应用奥卡姆剃刀,这也许是一种红利。

简单和焦点解决


在焦点解决实践(SFP)中,我们会发现简单理念体现在SFP的所有事情中,SFP(通常)不是为了获得结果。因此,下面这些就不那么必要。包括:


诊断问题。

检查问题原因。

根据模式解释客户的语言。

比客户更了解他的生活。

关联一个案例和另一个相似却又不同案例的信息。

根据诊断给客户提建议。(这个对酗酒者有用吗?或者对于销售?)

谈论心理过程作为个体的属性,或其中的人们的。

有关客户的,或者客户之间的讨论是概括性的或摘要性的。

在多变的世界中试图在很久之前就预先做出一个详细的计划。

一旦我们拿起奥卡姆剃刀剃掉这些,剩下的会是什么?简单,语言的明显化的简便应用,那就是焦点解决实践。只是它不是那样的易懂。


SFP的指导原则是有用的就多用,带着对每一位个体都尊敬的心态去实践。我们不能排除某些可能性,比如在一个给定的案例中,上述的不必要的元素可能会转变成有用的。因此,找到有用的应具备最开放的心态,也许是禅僧铃木俊隆所写的禅者的初心


(待续)


附:原文


Mark McKergow & Michael Hjerth

Learning how to act simply in complex situations


Keywords:

simplicity, training, elegance, functionalist, ikebana, Steve de Shazer


Summary:

Simplicity is a key aspect of both the work of Steve de Shazer and the SF approach. However, conveying this simplicity to managers is not easy. In this workshop, Mark McKergow and Michael Hjerth will introduce activities and lead discussions to explore the role of simplicity in SF work, to help participants to think more simply about their own practice and to help convey these ideas to managers learning SF.

Introduction

Simplicity is a key aspect of both the work of Steve de Shazer and of the SF approach. Steve was described by Insoo Kim Berg as 'the man with Occam's Razor'(Berg 2004), and the ideas of acting minimally, making minimal assumptions and using language very carefully are central to this methodology. Steve himself was well known for acting 'simple', even describing his therapeutic persona as 'de Shazer the stupid' (de Shazer 1994: 34).

Demonstrating the simple approach with a client is one thing, but talking about it can get very complicated (references to social construction and Wittgenstein being brought into play). De Shazer himself could appear reluctant to talk about it. He was known for his firmness in trainings, frequently responding 'I don't know' to questions which did not make sense within his understanding of language usage and SF practice. This approach was rigorous and certainly 'walked the talk'. However, we both observed many workshop participants being puzzled by this and finding it unhelpful.

Simplicity

If we look in the dictionary for a definition of simplicity, we find many uses of the word – for mathematics (simple equation, not involving terms higher than first order), for medicine (a simple fracture), and for finance (simple interest, not compounded). In amongst these we can find an entry relating to simple ideas – not complicated or elaborate or adorned or involved.

In a more philosophical content, the concept of simplicity is associated with Occam’s Razor. This principle, first defined by the English monk and scholar William of Occam in the 14th century, is usually rendered as ‘it is vain to do with more what can be done with fewer’.

This remark can be seen in the context of the philosophy of the time. The dominant school of the thought, the Scholastics, were concerned to find more and more complicated explanations of the world and how it worked. The more complicated the idea, clearly the cleverer it was, and the most likely to be true. William railed against this, and articulated his idea that, on the contrary, the simplest idea - that with the fewest assumptions – which fitted the facts was preferable. This principle is part of philosophy, and also science, to this day. Excess assumptions are shaved off, as if with a razor, to reveal the truth.

Occam’s Razor is often misunderstood. In a well-known example, creationists sometimes contend that their idea – God created everything – is very simple, and therefore is scientifically correct. Scientists contend that this is not at all simple – to postulate the existence of an omnipotent creator is a large move indeed, particularly when the world around us can be described in terms which do not require such a figure.

How is simplicity useful – to managers?

In the philosophical and scientific sense, Occam’s Razor is used to pare away unnecessary assumptions to help determine the usefulness of different hypotheses or concepts– maximum explanation in minimum terms. In everyday management terms, this is not usually at the forefront of the busy manager’s mind – most managers are more concerned with efficiency and effectiveness. One might say they want maximum results for minimum cost. However, these two considerations need not be at odds with each other.

In SF work, simplicity is taken as meaning maximum change for minimal talk and minimal use of time and resources. We find that this is welcomed by managers. Perhaps the fact that to do this they are also applying Occam’s Razor in scientific and philosophical terms is a bonus?

Simplicity and Solutions Focus

In the context of SF practice, we can see the idea of simplicity reflected in all the things which SF practice does not (usually) do to get results, and which seem therefore to be unnecessary. These include:

Diagnosis of the problem Examination of the cause of the problem.

Interpreting the client’s words according to a schema.

Knowing better than the client about the client’s life.

Relating information from one case directly into another similar (but different) case.

Referring to clients by their diagnosis (‘does it work for alcoholics? Or forsales people?’)

Speaking of mental processes as properties of individuals, or inside people.

Talking in generalities and abstract terms about clients and with clients.

Attempting to make detailed plans a long time in advance in an emergent world.

Once we take Occam’s Razor and shave these away, what is left? The simple, apparently naive of language that is SF practice. Only it isn’t as straightforward as that.

The guiding principle of SF practice is to ‘find what works and do more of it’, and do this with respect to each individual case. We can not exclude the possibility that, in a given case, one of the ‘unnecessary’ elements in the list above may turn out to be useful. So, the finding of what works should be done with the most open of minds, perhaps the ‘beginner’ mind written about by Zen author Shunryu Suzuki.


(To be continued)

参考文献 REFERENCES

1. Berg IK (2004): In conversation with MMcK in a workshop, Toronto, Canada, October 2004

2. Jackson P Z/ McKergow M (2002): The Solutions Focus, Nicholas Brealey Publishing

3. de Shazer S (1994): Words Were Originally Magic, WW Norton

Stewart I/Cohen J: Figments of Reality, Cambridge University Press

4. Wiseman R (2004): The Luck Factor; The Scientific Study of the Lucky Mind, Arrow


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