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In areas where a person has a lot of familiarity (good knowledge about something), he knows how the scene (or area) should be. For example, if a person has worked at a certain type of job for many years, he probably has familiarity with the best tools and equipment to use, the most efficient ways and the safest procedures to follow, how things used to be done a few years ago and how things have changed. He would be able to spot outpoints easily, such as someone using the wrong tool for a job. But if a person does not have any familiarity with how a scene ought to be, he cannot easily spot outpoints (illogical data) in it.

Knowing how a scene ought to be is the same thing as knowing what is the ideal scene for that area. Ideal means perfect or the best possible. If a person doesn’t know the ideal scene or situation, then he is not likely to observe things about it that are not ideal.

For example, if we send a farmer on a sailing trip, he would be in an area that he is not familiar with. In a mild blow (that is, with wind speeds of about 35 miles or 50 kilometers per hour), the sails and their ropes would be creaking and the waves would be hitting the hull (bottom and sides of the ship). Seeing and hearing all these things, the farmer would be sure the ship is almost ready to sink. He has no familiarity with how it should sound or look, so he misses any real outpoints and may think that pluspoints are outpoints.

But on a calm and pretty day the farmer sees a very large ship come within five hundred feet of the side of his ship. The larger ship starts coming closer and closer to the ship the farmer is on, and the farmer thinks everything is great.

An experienced officer on board may be rushing around, trying to avoid being hit by the larger ship and all the farmer would think was that the officer did not have good manners! Since the farmer does not have any familiarity with the sea and has no ideal as to what smooth, safe sailing would be, he would not be likely to see real outpoints unless he drowned. Yet an experienced sailor is someone who is familiar with everything about ships and sailing. He recognizes outpoints in even small things that are illogical.

On the other hand, if the sailor were at a farm, he would completely miss that there was a disease affecting the wheat (so the wheat would not be able to be sold and the farm would not make any money from the wheat). He would not spot that a gate was open (for example, allowing cows or other animals to wander away and be lost). The sailor would not see any outpoints in this farm, but the farmer would see these same things and would know right away that the farm was in such poor condition that it would not be able to continue operating.

The rule is:


If a staff hasn’t got an idea of what happens in a real organization and how it is supposed to operate, then it misses obvious outpoints.

An example of this occurs when an experienced executive visiting an organization tries to point out to the brand-new staff members (who have no ideal or familiarity about the organization) what is wrong with the organization. They fix up what he says to do (while acting like they don’t want to), but then they stop the moment he leaves. Since they do not have any familiarity or any ideal of a perfect organization, these brand-new staff just do not see anything wrong or anything right either!

The consequences of this are themselves illogical. You might see an untrained executive firing all the people who are good producers and letting the lazy or worthless people stay. His ideal would be a quiet organization, let us say. So he fires anyone who is noisy or who tells other people they should get to work. He ignores statistics. He ignores the things he should watch merely because he has an incorrect ideal and no familiarity with what a proper scene consists of.

Observation Errors

When the scene is not familiar, a person has to look hard to become aware of things. You’ve noticed tourists doing this. Yet the person who has lived there for a long time ”sees” a lot more than the tourists do even while he is walking straight ahead down the road.

It is easy to confuse the unusual fact with the ”important fact.” ”It was a warm day for winter” may be unusual, but it is a useful fact only when it turns out that actually everything froze up on that day or it indicated some other outpoint.

Most errors in observation are made because a person has no ideal for the scene or no familiarity with it.

However there are other error sources.

”Being reasonable” is the chief offender. Reasonable means that a person is trying so hard to make illogical information or situations seem logical that he imagines, invents or is willing to accept false reasons to explain them. People assume that something is correct, such as by imagining that something is there, for example, instead of seeing that it is actually missing. A false datum is imagined to exist because a sequence is wrong or has a missing step.

For example, there is a box at the movie theater to put your ticket into when you walk into the theater, but the person who is usually there to take the ticket from you is missing. This isn’t noticed and people just imagine that it is okay tonight to simply put the tickets in the box. But it turns out that the ticket taker was late and the result was that some people just came in anyway. They didn’t buy a ticket and are just walking into the theater without one.

It is very strange how easily people accept these imagined data that aren’t there at all. This is because an illogical sequence is uncomfortable. To make the discomfort less, they change their own observation by ignoring the outpoint and concluding something else.

Accurate Observation

There are certain conditions necessary for accurate observation.

First is a means of perception, looking or hearing, etc., through the senses. This can occur either by communication from a distance (for example, by reading, hearing or seeing something that is sent from another area) or by direct looking, feeling, experiencing.

Second is an ideal of how the scene or area should be.

Third is familiarity with how such scenes are when things are going well or when they are not going well.

Fourth is understanding pluspoints (rightnesses) when present.

Fifth is knowing outpoints (all types) when they appear.

Sixth is rapid ability to analyze data.

Seventh is the ability to analyze the situation.

Eighth is the willingness to inspect the area that has the most outpoints more thoroughly.

Then one has to have the knowledge and imagination necessary to handle.

One could call the above the cycle of observation. If one calls handle number nine, it would be the Cycle of Control. Cycle means all the steps from the beginning to the end of an action.

If a person is trained to understand all variations of outpoints (illogics) and studies up to figure out an ideal and gains familiarity with the scene or type of area, his ability to observe and handle things would be considered to be of the highest excellence.

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