Seeing the Mountain - Levels of Detail

You will find a clear path to the top of the mountain faster as you build your ability to situationally vary the resolution you see the world in.

D. Brown Management Profile Picture
Share

This applies to the construction of a project, the building of a contracting business and to life in general.

Leadership Tools: Seeing the Mountain. Top Down or Bottom Up?

Whether you see the “Big Picture” or the “Operational Minutia” matters little.  It is the ability to rapidly zoom in and out as the situation dictates that makes the difference.  

Looking at Mount Everest as an example.  From basecamp one level and radius the mountain is about 428 billion cubic yards of material.  That would require CAT-740’s dumping material at a 1 minute cycle time around the clock for 25,000 years!  

If you built a point cloud at a 1 square foot resolution out of sand it would take 70 cubic yards.  For reference this picture is less than 0.001% of that resolution.  

It is typically better to start developing your mental model as a bigger picture even if it is fuzzy.  You may be trying to climb the wrong mountain and it is much better to see that before starting to fill in the details.




The Quit Option
Most people rarely quit in the middle when they can see the end. They just have trouble getting started because the overall “Big Goal” seems too complicated.
Always Do the Math and Build Your Own Models
You will learn more in the process of building and refining your own models than you will in just reading 1,000 headlines. How much time do you spend developing your own models as a mechanism to learn?
Are You Solving the Right Category of the Problem?
Effectively prioritize, define, and solve problems in your organization.