在线词典,在线翻译

为什么要知错?

所属:成长励志 阅读:4205 次 评论:3 条 [我要评论]  [+我要收藏]

小编摘要:《纽约时报》专栏作家爱丽娜?塔根在她的新书指出:美国人有一个缺点——不愿意面对自己的错误,也不愿意从错误中学到教训——直到这些小错酿成大祸。

error

 

 

 

对美国经济前景感到乐观的人(包括我在内)总是喜欢把目光投向美国人的一系列特质:美国人喜欢风险和革新;美国人擅长短期记忆,因此全民信心高昂;就连个人的贪欲和一点痴心妄想也不失为一件好事,因此这些特质都预示美国经济会再次复兴。
Those optimistic about the nation's economic future (and count me as one) look to a litany of American characteristics that presage its revival: our comfort with risk and reinvention, a national confidence buoyed by short-term memory, even individual greed and bit of wishful thinking.
不过《纽约时报》的消费专栏作家爱丽娜·塔根却在她的新书中抛出了一个新的观点,她指出了美国人的一个缺点:美国人不愿意面对自己的错误,也不愿意从错误中学到教训——直到这些小错酿成大祸。
A new book by New York Times consumer columnist Alina Tugend throws a new twist to that picture by pointing out an American shortcoming: Our resistance to confronting mistakes -- and learning from them -- before they turn into catastrophic blunders.
塔根的新书名叫《错误无伤大雅:犯错的意外收获》(Better by Mistake: The Unexpected Benefits of Being Wrong),书中所传达的信息是文化上的,而不是经济上的。这本书本月刚刚上架,它来得正是时候——眼下恰好是美国大投行贝尔斯登(Bear Stearns)倒闭三周年的祭日。贝尔斯登的崩溃正是金融危机的导火索,1300多万美国人在危机中失业,至今生活苦不堪言。
The message of Better by Mistake: The Unexpected Benefits of Being Wrong is cultural, not economic. But it's a timely one coming this month -- the third anniversary of the collapse of Bear Stearns, which kicked off a financial crisis that continues to haunt the lives of more than 13 million unemployed Americans.
当代美国人是在闹哄哄的政治和苛刻的媒体环境下成长起来的,他们觉得自己在直面错误方面堪称是专家。现实社会上演了一出又一出揭示人性弱点的肥皂剧。政客们深知(或者别人会很快提醒他们),如果自己犯了错,除非他们做出“郑重道歉”,否则他们的仕途就会断送在这些错误上。
Modern Americans -- shaped by raucous politics and a rapacious media --like to think of themselves as experts in confronting mistakes. Reality shows serve up juicy drama out of human shortcomings. Politicians know (or are quickly reminded) that they can't move on from bad misbehavior unless and until they issue the "grand apology."
在这方面,美国政府尤其有着值得夸耀的历史,美国政府一向喜欢通过国会听证会和总统委员会调查危机背后的各种错误,然后建立起各种官僚机构,防止这些错误在未来再次发生。不过它的预防效果常常不尽人意。比如当年由于情报失察,美国发生了911事件,后来美国成立了国土安全部(Homeland Security Department)。但在卡特里娜飓风后,国土安全部在保护沿海人口方面却做得并不理想,我们只能希望该部门在保护美国人免受恐怖袭击上能表现得好一些。
Washington, in particular, has a boastful history of investigating the mistakes behind a crisis -- through congressional hearings and presidential commissions -- and building bureaucracies designed to thwart them in the future. It often comes up short: One can only hope the Homeland Security Department -- a product of intelligence failures leading to 9/11 -- is better at protecting us against terrorist attacks than it was at protecting a coastline population after Hurricane Katrina.
一个新的官僚机构的建立,并不说明人们对危机背后的错误达成了政治共识。以美国国会建立的金融危机调查委员会(Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission)为例,去年在国会已经通过了彻底的银行业改革方案之后,金融危机调查委员会公布了一份调查报告,阐述2008年金融危机爆发的原因。而这个委员会揭露的最大问题,其实是它揭露了美国政界在金融危机的根本原因究竟是什么这个问题上存在着多大的分歧。
A new bureaucracy, moreover, isn't even an indicator that there is political consensus about the mistakes behind a crisis: The congressionally-created Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission not only issued its report on the causes of the 2008 economic collapse after Congress had already passed sweeping banking reforms last year, its greatest revelation turns out to be the extent of disagreement over what those root causes actually were.
商业界一向不乏各类书籍和咨询公司来向他们提供建议,告诉他们如何把犯错的苦果转变成更好的商业实践——比如摩托罗拉公司(Motorola)著名的“六西格玛”生产体系(“六西格玛”是一种质量管理手段,它曾经挽救了濒临倒闭的摩托罗拉公司——译注);或是哈佛大学的克里斯?阿格瑞斯发明的“双环学习”法,该方法旨在找出导致犯错的内在价值观。然而,尽管有这么多资源防止他们犯错,但在美国全国性的经济崩溃中,金融部门还是扮演了主角。
The business community has no shortage of books and consultancies offering advice on how to turn the lemons of errors into a lemonade of better business practices (think Motorola's (MOT, Fortune 500) famed Six Sigma manufacturing system or the double-loop learning of Harvard's Chris Argyris, which is designed to ferret out the underlying values that lead to mistakes). Even with all that, the financial sector played a starring role in the nation's economic collapse.
塔根在书中引用了一些研究,这些研究表明,尽管企业都想从错误中学到教训,然而事实证明,这是一件“很难执行”的事。如果牵涉众多利益,那么从错误中总结经验教训更是“几乎不可能”的。塔根的研究显示,我们花了大把大把的时间和精力,来为自己的错误辩解,而不是坦承自己犯了这些错误,并从中学习必要的教训。
Tugend cites studies showing that despite all these best intentions on the part of organizations to learn from mistakes, it has proven "difficult to implement" in general -- and "all but impossible" when much is at stake. Tugend's research shows we spend a shocking amount of time and energy justifying our blunders, rather than owning up to them and learning needed lessons before moving on.
塔根写道:“人们经常把犯错当成一件丢脸的事,认为应该越早翻过这一页越好,而不是把它当成一件需要检讨和学习的事。”因此,许多情况下人们都未能“发现系统的问题”。
"All too often mistakes are treated as something shameful that should be flung aside as quickly as possible, rather than something to be examined and learned from," she writes. As a result, there is widespread failure to "uncover system problems."
我们的骄傲取决于行事的正确。我们总是喜欢支持自己看法的数据,因此我们往往对其它数据视而不见。领导者们经常采取自我辩解的行为,这甚至形成了一种自我强化效果。
Our pride is tied up in being right. We tend to favor data that confirm our beliefs so we don't see alternatives. Too often leaders practice defense routines that become self-reinforcing.
加州大学洛杉矶分校(UCLA)的一项研究指出,美国人还存在着一种文化偏见,从小就重视“能力”,轻视“努力”。美国人在表扬小孩子的时候,往往夸他“真聪明”,而不是夸他“干得好”。如果学生的功课出了错,人们往往觉得这个学生表现得很“失败”,而忽视了这样一个道理:课业上的错误说明学生还有某些需要学习的东西。美国人的这种教育方法与中国人和日本人的教学方式形成了鲜明的对比。
There is also a cultural bias toward ability rather than effort, infused from an early age, when children are praised for being "smart" rather than doing a good job. Errors in schoolwork are treated as failures rather than an index of what still needs to be learned -- in sharp contrast to the Chinese and Japanese teaching styles, according to a UCLA study.
这种心理一直影响到了美国商界,导致华尔街形成了一种过分信任和崇拜个人才智的人才体系。塔根指出,在这种人才体系下,许多人不愿承认、也不愿纠正自己的缺陷,从而导致他们形成了思维定式。
Take this up the ranks of American business and we end up with a Wall Street talent system that worships (and therefore is too trusting of) individual brilliance. It creates, Tugend notes, a fixed mindset among people who won't admit or correct their deficiencies.
正如塔根指出的那样,许多美国人认为先天的才华要胜过偶尔犯错的后天努力,这是个很奇怪的现象。美国作家霍雷肖?阿尔杰的作品告诉了我们一个相反的道理:只要勤奋和努力,任何人都可以爬上人生的顶峰。爱因斯坦也曾说过一句名言:“一个人从未犯错,是因为他从未尝试过新事物。”
It's odd, as she points out, that Americans embrace the notion that innate talent trumps mistake-making perseverance. That quintessentially American narrative, the Horatio Alger tale, makes the opposite case: With diligence and hard work, anyone can climb to the top. Or as Albert Einstein famously said, "Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."
我们往往认为,自由市场最大的好处就是它有自我纠正的本能。不过现在美国仍在努力爬出经济衰退的深渊。因此有个问题很值得一问:政府和企业如何才能用巴菲特的标准来要求自己?——沃伦?巴菲特在2009年致股东的信里给他自己提出了一些标准:“2008年我做了一些愚蠢的投资。我至少犯一个重大错误,还有一些错误不那么严重,但也造成了不良后果。此外我还犯了一些疏忽大意的错。当新情况出现时,我本应三思自己的想法,然后迅速采取行动,但我却只知道咬着大拇指发愣。”
We like to think that a free market's greatest strength is its self-corrective nature. But as America struggles to climb out from the canyon of economic collapse, it's worth asking how both government and businesses can hold themselves to the same standard that Warren Buffett set for himself in his 2009 statement to shareholders: "During 2008 I did some dumb things in investments. I made at least one major mistake of commission and several lesser ones that also hurt. Furthermore I made some errors of omission, sucking my thumb when new facts came in that should have caused me to reexamine my thinking and promptly take action."
这种检讨的话正是我们需要在企业的董事会里听到的——也是我们需要在华盛顿听到的。
Those are the kinds of words we need to hear more of in boardrooms -- and in Washington.
10
2011-04-02 13:59 编辑:kuaileyingyu
分享到:
关注海词微博:
发表评论:
表达一些您的想法吧!已有3条评论>>
登录,再发表评论
文明上网,理性发言!
最新评论:
  • ymcc 说:

    good

    2011-04-04 13:14 回复 支持(0) 反对(0) 沙发
  • "we spend a shocking amount of time and energy justifying our blunders, rather than owning up to them and learning needed lessons before moving on."this is an explicit weakness of human nature,not only belonging to a certain national civilian such as Americans.

    2011-04-07 11:49 回复 支持(0) 反对(0) 板凳
  • joe.ding 说:

    I've made nothing because I didn't make any mistakes~

    2011-04-07 13:08 回复 支持(0) 反对(0) 地板
您可能还感兴趣的文章:
  • [成长励志]38岁,38个体会

    一位38岁的父亲在生日时写给他六个小孩的文章,虽然有点老生常谈外加一点唱高调,不过还是值得同学们参考一下。
  • [生活杂谈]有那么一天

    有那么一天,我们终于意识到——只有敢于经受重大挫折的人才能获得伟大的成就。
>>精华推荐阅读
热门评论文章