Embrace obliquity & don't be afraid to chase a rabbit along the way.
The term rabbit hole is often used to describe online activities. The Web was essentially designed to function as a rabbit hole because of the way hyperlinks work, and Web surfing in general can be considered a voluntary trip down the rabbit hole. More purposeful examples of activities that tend to follow such paths include Web analytics, data analytics and various types of research. Interactive voice response (IVR) systems and help desk calls are among the other types of rabbit holes that people enter intentionally, if somewhat reluctantly.
In a fall down the rabbit hole, an individual sets off on the path with a goal, gets sidetracked by various events and changes direction several times along the way, eventually ending up somewhere unexpected, typically without having satisfied the original purpose of the quest. Nevertheless, the path often leads to serendipitous discoveries. Furthermore, according to the principle of obliquity, the meandering path may eventually turn out to be more productive than a more direct one.
Obliquity is a theory that proposes the best way to achieve a goal when you are working with a complex system is to take an indirect approach instead of a direct one
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In business as in science, it seems that you are often most successful in achieving something when you are trying to do something else. I think of it as the principle of ‘obliquity’. — Sir James Black
Obliquity: Why our goals are best achieved indirectly is a book by economist John Kay was inspired by an observation of the successful pharmaceutical researcher, Sir James Black
His ideas about managing complexity parallels the discussions on this blog regarding intensive management of complex systems and the need to view schools as complex systems rather than simple machines:
Yet as the world has become more complex, management thinking is still largely anchored in linear thinking where command