Introducing the FS (the Far Side): series of blog posts. In the midst of cleaning out a drawer this past weekend, I came across a stack of one a day calendar tear-offs featuring Gary Larson's the Far Side that I had kept and not looked at in some time. I figured it would be fun to revisit them and comment in posts for each.
This begs the question, how do you know unknowns or consider unknown-unknowns? And for this you need a comparison to 'normalcy' or in other words an expectation. It could even be to an ideal.
The difference, a gap analysis, between what you see and what you expect helps identify what is missing or additive, between the two. Now you have a sense of your known-unknowns.
The unknown-unknowns are often factors that lead to disruption. They are the 'things' that are not the norm, they are 'outside the box', they are likely to lead to radical change, for better or worse.
These are much harder to identify and sometimes simply the awareness of them with a general understanding to be alert to them will prepare one to deal with them if they arise.
When one thinks about it, most of us are employed by the fact that there are problems that need to be solved. And most of life is a sequence of problems to solve and challenges to overcome. Then once in a great while, we get confronted with the absurd (think the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man) and Larson reminds us that it is okay to laugh at it.
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Ross R. Nunamaker