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Why God Made Chevys and Fords, or... Why We Make Different Choices

Posted 9 years ago

“Greg Smith has been in the human performance game for over 25 years.  He started as an Executive Recruiter and quickly discovered that the “initial impressions” one got in face-to-face interviews was not a reliable criteria for identifying or placing top performing candidates. He has identified the universal human factors that drive strong, average and marginal performance and has identified how to measure those factors in an easy to read, easy to understand performance model that provides the integrated answers to the three questions that every company is really asking: 1. Can this person do the job?, 2. Will this person do the job?, 3. Will this person do the job for me in my organization?”

~ Dr. Tony Alessandra

Why God Made Chevys and Fords, or… Why We Make Different Choices

by Greg Smith

Human beings are ALWAYS trying to achieve a GOOD and SUCCESSFUL RESULT! Every action we take targets achieving what we believe IS a good and successful result. Every result (good or not so good) is in large measure, based upon the actions we take. Our specific actions are always preceded by a DECISION to take that action. When faced with exactly the same situation, different people will make different choices, different decisions…that result in different actions and different degrees of success. That decision is conceived, organized and executed by the human mind to ALWAYS accomplish two things:

  1. To make a decision that assure we SURVIVE.
  2. To make a decision that tries to assure we THRIVE.

We value things differently and make different decisions. Understanding and measuring each person’s “decision making mechanism” i.e. HOW each person lands on the decision that creates the action they will WANT as they pursue their view of SUCCESS is the contribution to humanity that was made by Dr. Robert S. Hartman. It works like this. As “life happens” for each of us we must address and resolve the problems, challenges and opportunities we encounter. Both in our professional and personal life, those issues are different for each of us. The human mind seeks to understand these issues by first organizing and evaluating them (the potential solutions) via three different perspectives. Solutions are viewed STRUCTURALLY, COMPARATIVELY AND UNIQUELY. Here’s an example. Let’s assume you are trying to make a “good decision” about selecting/choosing/deciding about a bringing home a new dog. You go to the rescue mission and view various animals. Structural Valuation or Perspective – This is the FIRST of the three valuations the mind makes. In an attempt to make a good “I want to get a new puppy decision” the structural or black or white, either or, complete concept fulfillment or not view asks…” a. First of all, is this furry four legged creature with teeth and a tail that wags a DOG or NOT? (Canis lupis familiaris)

  • Cats, foxes, wolves and wildebeests are ALSO furry four legged creatures. However, because they have DIFFERENT genus and species markers, they FAIL the Structural Valuation for being a DOG and drop out of the new puppy valuation. Note this is not a new PET valuation in which case the cat, fox, wolf and wildebeest could WOULD meet the structural definition of “a new non‐human creature to reside in our home and become a part of our family.”

Comparative Valuation or Perspective – This is the SECOND of the three valuations the mind makes as it pursues making a “good choice.” The comparative element of the “I want a new puppy decision” compares one dog to one another dog (they MUST always pass the structural valuation and actually be a dog rather than a wildebeest). The comparative valuation always compares one thing to another similar thing. Examples: which is the bigger dog or the mellower dog or the one with the brown spot on its forehead? There are an unlimited number of side by side comparisons you could make as you are forming your decision that will precede the action that determines which of these furry four legged creates with teeth and a tail that you will take home with you. But there is one more valuation that carries the strongest influence of all.

The Unique Valuation or Perspective – This is the THIRD of the three valuations the mind employs as it seeks to make a “good choice.” Imagine you have identified four puppies who meet both the structural (canine lupis familiaris) and the comparative (right size, right temperament, right coat length etc.) and the rescue mission personnel have put all four of them into a socializing area where you can interact with them. You enter the room and one of the dogs runs away and cowers in the corner, one of them runs up to you, repeatedly jumps on you and begins to tug on your pant leg. The third one bares her teeth as you seek to pet her but the fourth one comes up to you, sits on your feet, leans back against your legs and looks up longingly at you as if to say, “Hey, I have been waiting for you…quick, let’s get out of here!” Bingo…you have a new puppy. How can we MEASURE a person’s decision making pattern? If decision precedes action…and action creates success…being able to MEASURE the decision making pattern that is built upon the aforementioned three step evolution gives us insight into the clarity, personal bias and balance of anyone’s decision making process that will operate upon their credentials or WHAT THEY KNOW HOW TO DO to enable them to make both informed (credential driven) and good (decision making pattern driven) choices. In the business model, the STRUCTURAL VALUATION provides insights into how the individual values the RULES, STRUCTURE, POLICIES, STANDARDS and CODES in their workplace in terms of the value of taking actions that follow those rules, standards and codes. In the business model, the COMPARATIVE VALUATION provides insights into how the individual values the PRACTICAL THINKING PRAGMATIC ALTERNATIVE OPTIONS (Option A vs. Option B) in terms of the solution they believe will deliver the best “good result” that operates within the best “good structural framework” that reflects their belief in the way things OUGHT to be. In the business model, the UNIQUE VALUATION provides insights into how the individual values the role that other PEOPLE will play in their solution. None of us operate in a vacuum. Being able to measure how other people will react to and be willing to cooperate with our decisions plays a very important role in the overall effectiveness of the actions we take. Summary Every decision (good, bad or in‐between) is built upon how each of us VALUES structure/rules, comparative choices/alternatives and unique/people reactions. Remember, that the unique view incorporates BOTH the structural and comparative valuations, the comparative valuation incorporates the structural valuation and the structural valuation begins the process.
While there is no UNIVERSAL definition for good or bad…there is a universal mechanism that each individual employs to uniquely define good or bad choices for themselves. Thanks to Dr. Hartman’s amazing research, we’ve been able to identify and measure that unique mechanism pattern for each individual.

Blog contributing writer, Greg Smith.

Greg Smith has over 25 years in the human performance industry. First as an executive recruiter where he learned that “the candidate you initially see is NOT always the employee who shows up for work!”  It was those unexpected “first date recruiting misfires” that led him to begin the quest for performance technologies that were available to “see behind the interviewing mask” and identify those who had the best prospects for strong performance. After years of rigorous research and testing, It was obvious that the industry needed a better mousetrap.

Greg has also been a guest speaker at numerous corporate events dealing with leadership, sales and management capacities.  He has added to his formal university education with years of study with two of Nobel nominee Dr. Robert S. Hartman’s graduate students Dr. David Medford and Wayne Carpenter.  Greg is also a member of the Hartman Institute and has been an invited speaker at their national meeting. Additionally he’s a long time member of Chairman’s club, is a President’s Award winner and has spoken at several national performance conferences on the nature of superior performance.