The Zen of Business Psychology

July 19, 2010

My tutor at Exeter University, the late Denver Daniels, was keen that everyone read Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. This is a Marmite sort of book in that you either love or hate it. However deep in its internals the author says this: ‘The real purpose of the scientific method is to make sure nature hasn’t misled you into thinking you know something you actually don’t know.’ Apart from being a neat summary of what science is about, it also has resonance with business psychology, because business psychologists are trying to sweep away unhelpful heuristics, accepted and incorrect wisdoms, and all the other paraphernalia that gets in the way of really understanding another human. And clear understanding is what is required before anything else, however fancy, can happen.

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenenance was written by Robert Pirsig and is available from Vintage books.


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