brown-nosing-1We often need to explain to people what a heuristic is.  Usually we tell them that it’s similar to a “rule of thumb” and then try to give examples.

I came across this great example on Bob Sutton’s blog …

“Today, after lunch, an executive told me a story about how a secretary where he worked walked-up to the boss and asked “when are the layoffs?”  The boss looked shocked and wondered what in the world prompted the question.  She answered  that when something bad was about to happen, he stopped looking people in the eye when he talked to them and looked at his feet instead.  So the codeword in the place was “the boss is wearing interesting shoes today,” which they all knew meant that something bad was going to happen.”

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