It Is Better To Ask For Forgiveness Than Permission – why the thirsty should let the mudded water settle before drinking it.

There was a not-so-distant time where information was the difference between success and mega success.

These days we are flooded with information. We have specialist access to even more specialised information that is so specific that it makes readers feels experts. This avalanche of information also happens at the speed of light – or the speed of your internet connection. This makes the volume of what needs to be broadcasted even more frenetic. Masses of content is created to cover information, to the point of absurdity at times. [I recall during the Queen’s funeral commentators discussing names, ages, ranks and passions, interactions of the soldiers protecting the coffin during the vail. How relevant was that? Or the name of the horse dragging the guns in a ceremony and who owned it…]. In fact, we have so much information available that the line between factual account and prediction has blurred so much.

All is to be broadcasted and reacted instantly. This has the perverse effect of making the news and markets symbiosis almost a dance to a cacophonic tune. We aim to be the first ones to allegedly know, the first ones to react and be ready. We are so focused on being “ahead of the curve” that we take information at face value, without even taking the time to check its accuracy. If it is there, it must be true. And if it is not, not our problem, we acted fast and based on the information we had “at the time”.

It is better to ask for forgiveness than permission!  Often the long term view is forgotten!

Maybe, just maybe, we should have taken more time to check the full extent of the information and facts. What if it takes more than 24h? well, certainly it would take longer than 24h to rectify a decision taken on the wrong information, so actually slowing down, and thinking about what is in front of us helps us to speed up outcomes. 

I am reminded of the say that the thirsty should let the mudded water settle before drinking it. Ok, I just made that up, but if you read it here it must be true…

Simon Vumbaca

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