There are two dimensions to thinking efficiently. For a start you need to ensure you are productive, arriving at decisions in a timely manner. But you also need to arrive at the right decisions.
Being productive can, to an extent, be handled by training. John Edwards says an MBA gives additional skills and expertise for senior rolls, but it also gets you back into organised education and training.
Our formal education might have been holding us back a little though, according to Tony Buzan. He says a lot of what we learn we memorise in the same way we write. Instead we should try mnemonics — the technique he adopted when he invented MindMaps. It’s a process of getting your thoughts into order, with priorities and links to assemble a meaningful order.
That all helps us arrive at decisions in a timely manner, based on information we have gathered and ordered in our mind. The problem is, according to Michael Morgan, our decisions are used forming only part of our brain. He says there are four quadrants to our brain — the logical, the organised, the intuitive and the emotional. We need to understand which is our thinking preference to understand how it colours our decisions.
David Rock says many of our decisions our instinctive, but our instincts are primeval, not designed for work in a modern office. For example, we hold a strong desire for status, and we feel threatened if anyone challenges it. Again, it helps to understand how our instincts work so we can temper them in the modern business world.