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October 24, 2016 / 22 Tishri, 5777
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Parshat Noach

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Leaders must always remember to take into account how other people might react and that many factors can intervene to affect the outcome of a plan. This does not mean that we should do things haphazardly and hope for the best. Of course we should plan to achieve our goals. But we must realize that things rarely go as planned. We must therefore have a healthy reservoir of flexibility in our toolkit as well. This means both the constant openness to feedback and the wherewithal to adapt our plans as necessary. General Teddy Roosevelt Jr. when informed that he and his soldiers had landed on the wrong beach on D-Day, June 6, 1944, responded simply, “So we’ll start the war from here.”

[1] Klein’s research focuses on those factors which encourage insights as well as those that stifle them. Among the factors that prevent insights from emerging is what is known as “organizational repression” (p.162). The Japanese war game exercise prior to Midway is an example of this phenomenon.

Rabbi David Hertzberg

About the Author: Rabbi Dr. David Hertzberg is the principal of the Yeshivah of Flatbush Middle Division and is an adjunct assistant professor of History at Touro College.

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