45. News Improvement

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Bad news is not conveyed accurately upward through the organization.

In some organizations, bad news does not get reported upward at all. More often, bad news is improved as it travels upward from one level to the next. Consider the example shown above.

News improvement is a destructive pattern because it deprives decision-makers of needed information, and this can lead to bad decisions (or missed decisions) and outcomes that are worse than they need be. There are many famous examples of bad decisions that could have been avoided had information flowed more effectively. In the last quarter-century, perhaps the decision to ...

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