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Critical Thinking

Introduction to Critical Thinking

Published by O'Reilly Media, Inc.

The basics for business

Nov. 23, 2021

Midnight - 3 a.m. Coordinated Universal Time

This event has ended.

What you’ll learn and how you can apply it

By the end of this live, online course, you’ll understand:

  • The definition of critical thinking
  • Why critical thinking is crucial to solving problems and innovating
  • How it applies to everyday business

And you’ll be able to

  • Apply critical thinking skills to business needs
  • Become more effective in your work
  • Work with your team to solve problems and approach barriers to critical thinking

This live event is for you because…

  • You’re a manager in any area of your company and you need to help your team identify and solve problems.
  • You’re an individual contributor in any area of your company and you want to become a thought leader in your area.
  • You lead a growing company, and you need to know how to infuse critical thinking into your workforce.



The timeframes are only estimates and may vary according to how the class is progressing.

Critical Thinking: Introduction, definition, and relevance in today’s workplace (25 minutes)

  • Lecture: Defining critical thinking
  • Exercise: Share examples of recent critical thinking
  • Lecture: History of critical thinking as the core of progress and innovation; using critical thinking to uncover and help solve problems
  • Exercise: Use critical thinking to decide where to vacation
  • Lecture: Why critical thinking is crucial for your team to succeed
  • Exercise: Share examples where critical thinking was not used at work

Barriers to critical thinking at your company plus ways to approach them (25 minutes)

  • Lecture: Defining three barriers to critical thinking in the workplace
  • Exercise: Identifying barriers to critical thinking in your workplace

Break (10 minutes)

Applying critical thinking to daily business (30 minutes)

  • Lecture: Review of a fictional company and its struggles to create a smaller spin-off product from a highly successful product; understand how habit is the enemy of critical thinking
  • Exercise: Identifying habits in your workplace that might stifle new ways of thinking
  • Lecture: Review five examples of how critical thinking can affect your everyday actions at work: process, meetings, reports, emails, and overall company strategy
  • Exercise: Identify alternatives and provide evidence for changing habits and changing behavior to encourage critical thinking
  • Exercise: Identify alternate outcomes to situations in the examples that would have led to better outcomes; consider what actions could be taken next.

How to apply critical thinking to your life and team every day (20 minutes)

  • Lecture: How to think critically about the tolerance for critical thinking in your workplace
  • Exercise: Hypothetical examples of companies that encourage or discourage critical thinking
  • Exercise: Measuring your understanding of critical thinking

Question and Answer (10 minutes)

Your Instructor

  • Connie Missimer

    Connie Missimer is a philosopher and expert in critical thinking. Her book Good Arguments: An Introduction to Critical Thinking, which offers the basics of analyzing theories and arguments, is now in its fourth edition. She’s been influential in the critical thinking community for articles on her empirically based theory and has conducted workshops both nationally and internationally. She worked at Microsoft and then at AT&T, where she advised Samsung, Microsoft, and Google on making their products more user-friendly, and she holds over a dozen patents. Connie is fascinated by empirical findings—especially the counterintuitive ones—relating to daily work and is the author of Critical Thinking at Work: Does Your Company Pound or Flex? She has enjoyed the privilege of giving workshops on the O’Reilly learning platform for the past four years.

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