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Embracing critical thinking to move forward


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Tony Robbins, a motivational speaker and life coach, once said, “the quality of your decisions determines the quality of your life.” This idea also applies to businesses and it also captures the importance of critical thinking. Why? Because critical thinking shapes actions and actions lead to results.


Critical thinking is not about finding answers but about asking the right questions. This is perhaps the most effective way of learning and the most important skill in solving complex problems. Good questions allow you to challenge assumptions and think differently about established ideas, opening the door to new insights and solutions.


Today, critical thinking is strongly sought-after skill in many professions. Organizations are embracing critical thinking to get to the root-causes of issues.


There are many tools out there to help you get to the root cause of the problem. One tool involves defining a problem and asking why five times for each response to get to the source. You can get started by simply observing a decision you recently made and asking yourself “why?” Did you do it because it was automatic and easy? Did you do it because of something you value? Ask why again, if you did it because of something you value, then asking why can help you understand why you value it in the first place. You will soon notice the answers, and this will lead you to exciting places.


One of the essential aspects of critical thinking is that it allows you to track the source of your decisions. Without critical thinking, problems left unattended might go on unsolved, leaving you and your organization at a disadvantage.


Once you get comfortable with the habit of asking questions, begin expanding out to colleagues and your organization. Why did your colleague make this decision? And proceed with the five why’s. Embracing critical thinking is an effective method for learning. It gives you a significant advantage in your work and might be the skill you need to move forward in your career.