I’ve been listening to extracts from “Birth of a Theorem: A Mathematical Adventure” on BBC Radio 4’s Book of the Week. It’s Cédric Villani’s account of the years leading up to his award of the Fields Medal—the most coveted prize in mathematics.
We rarely get a chance to see the creative process at work. All we get to see is the final result—wrapped up in a neat little bow. We don’t see the blind alleys that were navigated to get there. Villani takes us on a journey through his unproductive lows, his breakthroughs and everything in between.
It’s the same with business decisions. We see the rationalised, justified final decision. Not the messy process of negotiation and estimation that resulted in the decision. If we’re to get better at making decisions, understanding the process is key.