You need to gain an understanding of the drivers that can make things happen. Why is that person or that subset of society reacting like that? What can we change ‘upstream’ to give us the results we want? How do we avoid ‘pushing water uphill’?
- Make sure that there is a rational mechanism for things to happen before you start making claims or stating intentions.
- Even when making statements of (political) faith you need to have an understanding of how the action you are proposing will actually make a difference.
- As an example, if I am told ‘we want to cut taxes to boost growth’ I will come back straightaway to point out that all credible economic thinktanks say there is no causal link: there is no acknowledged mechanism to link lowering taxes to increased growth. It is a piece of political faith and ‘a priori’ belief rather than a base for concrete action.
- Similarly Brexit was meant to stimulate an explosion of growth and innovation; but it cannot. We have a financial sector which has evolved to support real estate and risky financial investments. Since 1979 our sources of investment have been increasingly from abroad. We have unaccountably built a system based on inward investment. The mechanism to channel capital towards innovation is incredibly weak in this country. Hate it or love it there is no mechanism for the hopes, aspiration, dreams of Brexit supporters.
- As a professional engineer and an experienced trouble shooter I want ‘cause and effect’ rather than blind faith.