CHAPTER 1

The Principles of Planning

Planning as Modeling

It’s worth saying right from the start that a plan is merely a model of the real world. Once you have a plan, as soon as the real world diverges from it you know something you didn’t know before. With a plan, every divergence gives you the opportunity to revise your approach, change your assumptions, and learn. Without a plan, you are a passive follower, being led by the circumstances that arise. This is why planning is so important, and why it is necessarily iterative.

So what makes a good model? Every good model is an abstraction of reality—a simplification. It must represent correctly and usefully those aspects of reality that interest you. It can, and often does, ignore less relevant ...

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