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The Primes: How any Group can Solve any Problem by CHRIS McGOFF

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How skilled are you at creating nothing?

A CLEARING is a void where nothing exists. You can create CLEARINGS in your schedule or physical CLEARINGS in your office or home or hotel conference center. And you can create CLEARINGS in your mind, as they are spaces where possibilities can exist. In the context of the PRIMES, we remove all facts, thoughts, technology, people, meetings, distractions, interruptions, biases, and legacies. In short, you push aside everything. In this space of nothing, you place your DECLARED OUTCOME. You guard the CLEARING. You let into the CLEARING only what is essential to achieving your DECLARED OUTCOME.

A CLEARING is a place where the fewest people using the least resources can solve problems, drive change, and cause transformation in the least amount of time. People can concentrate in a CLEARING. People can have deep conversations and engage in critical thinking. In a CLEARING, people can do what they are doing.

We are called to solve complicated problems that require deep thinking in order to understand and solve them. Yet we are constantly interrupted by messages and requests for our attention. Consider the following two facts:

1. In 2008, American teens sent and received an average of 80 messages per day, twice the average in 2007.2
2. A 2007 study found that a group of Microsoft workers took an average of 15 minutes to return to serious ...

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