Evidence-based practice makes people more flexible and adaptable

How evidence-based practice makes people more adaptable
image_pdfimage_print

In last Thursday’s post What’s the difference between data and evidence? Evidence-based practice I made the statement that “you may be surprised to find that people also become much more adaptable and flexible as well” with evidence-based practice.

How evidence-based practice makes people more adaptable

Evidence-based people are more flexible and adaptable than fact based people

How evidence-based practice makes people more adaptable: I thought today I would quickly outline what sits behind this assertion and of course what evidence I have for stating this.

 

Lets play a game

So lets play a little game I get my students at Oxford to play…

Planet Fact - Evidence-based practice
The Good Planet Certainty

You are on a new planet.

  • All things are known.
  • Every problem has a solution
  • Someone somewhere knows the solution / answer to the problem you have
  • If you don’t know how to solve a problem you just need to find the right person who can (an authority)
  • There only two types of answers or solutions to things and problems:
    1. The right answers and solutions
    2. The wrong answers and solutions
  • Facts exist
  • Reality = facts
  • There are two types of facts / reality. Right ones and wrong ones and your job is to know or find the right facts/solutions/answers/reality.

The bottom line is knowledge = facts = reality

So imagine that’s your world.

Questions:

You have a job

What do you think you get paid for?
What do people expect of you?
What happens when you encounter a problem you know THE answer to?
What happens when you encounter a problem you don’t know how to solve or the answer to?
What do you do if someone asks you a question you don’t know the answer to?
How do you cope with change or situations where the facts no longer work?
What do you think are you going to be assessed on?
What happens when you meet someone who sees reality differently to how you do?
How flexible and adaptable are people on this planet?

 

What we find

  • Largely people realise that on this planet people see things as pretty certain and stable. They get paid for being right or for finding the right solutions or finding the right people with the right answers.
  • Facts are solid
  • There is one reality – the right reality
  • You are assessed on being right, being right is the currency.
  • There is only right or wrong
  • When you meet someone with a different viewpoint one of you must be wrong (most likely them)
  • You can prove things are right
  • Authority is the authority
  • If something used to work and now it doesn’t you have to find someone to diagnose and find out what went wrong.
  • Change is a problem. I have to change all my facts if change happens. Thanks uncomfortable / devastating. It is what is called a fixed mindset. It must be right.

~~~

Evidence-based practice Argument

The Planet Argument

Ok lets hop over to a new planet

On this world there are no such things as facts – they don’t exist. Reality is subjective, we all see things slightly differently – this is because we all have different learning, experience, beliefs and values.
There is a reality it’s just that no one can see or touch reality, but we each assume what reality is and know that’s what we are doing.
Knowledge = arguments or opinions
There are better arguments or opinions than others – not right or wrong just different.
The better arguments or opinions are based on more and or better evidence.
We decide evidence is better if it is reliable (comes from good or multiple sources) is triangulated and is valid (is actually deemed to be evidence of the thing it is purporting to be evidence of).
Learning = knowing (the right) things
The bottom line is all knowledge = argument/hypothesis/opinion which is based on evidence which is more (or less) valid and reliable. However there is no such thing as 100% validity and reliability.

 

Questions:

So now lets apply the same questions:

You have a job

What do you think you get paid for?
What do people expect of you?
What happens when you encounter a problem you know THE answer to?
What happens when you encounter a problem you don’t know how to solve or the answer to?
What do you do if someone asks you a question you don’t know the answer to?
How do you cope with change or situations where the facts no longer work?
What do you think are you going to be assessed on?
What happens when you meet someone who sees reality differently to how you do?
How flexible and adaptable are people on this planet?

 

What we find

  • What we usually find here is that people see that on this planet things are quite different. There is quite a lot of uncertainty. People are quite comfortable with this as they are used to it. The better argument (the one with better more complete/valid/reliable evidence) wins.
  • People are constantly getting better opinions / arguments as they develop their understanding of the evidence. Something new might come along that over turns what we believed before. Indeed we expect it to.
  • Everyone gets engaged as it’s an exploration
  • Learning = being engaged and getting better at analysing evidence
  • Lots of discussions about the evidence and the practice
  • Boy do you have to be flexible on this planet.
  • People think more on this plant rather than just remembering stuff
  • The evidence is the authority
  • Its not about being right its more about having great evidence to back up what you do.
  • It’s very problem solving oriented as opposed to knowing oriented
  • People here are much more independent
  • They are learning orientated
  • They can analyse and think through things better and better
  • It also means that this planet is inhabited by a population of researchers. Constructing, discovering and refining knowledge and using the best evidence available to create change.

 

Dualism v contextual commitment and relative constructionism

The first planet (way of thinking) is known as dualism
Most things are seen as right or wrong
People become committed to a (right) belief and rarely move
The currency is being right
Stability / certainty is good

The second is called contextual commitment / or relative constructionism
People realise that everything is contextual, dynamic and changing and as we learn more our understanding may change
People take responsibility for finding the best solution and commitment to ideas and a view evolves or grows and can change in the light of new or better evidence.
Change is good – it shows we are learning
The currency is critical thinking, the ability to think, research and analyse.

How evidence-based practice makes people more adaptable

How evidence-based practice makes people more adaptable, flexible and able to cope with uncertainty.

By looking for and using evidence, evidence-based practitioners are used to having to solve their own problems, often by either resorting to research or doing their own research to find out what is really going on. However they understand that is this not the final word, and that some one may come along with a better argument or better evidence. At that point they need to shift their view point to accommodate the new evidence. This ability to flex with the latest thinking and evidence breeds adaptability.

 

How to get Research for Evidence Based Practice and Increase Your Credibility

Be impressively well informed

Librarysmileherobg

Get the very latest research intelligence briefings, video research briefings, infographics and more sent direct to you as they are published

Be the most impressively well-informed and up-to-date person around...

Powered by ConvertKit
Like what you see? Help us spread the word

David Wilkinson

David Wilkinson is the Editor-in-Chief of the Oxford Review. He is also acknowledged to be one of the world's leading experts in dealing with ambiguity and uncertainty and developing emotional resilience. David teaches and conducts research at a number of universities including the University of Oxford, Medical Sciences Division, Cardiff University, Oxford Brookes University School of Business and many more. He has worked with many organisations as a consultant and executive coach including Schroders, where he coaches and runs their leadership and management programmes, Royal Mail, Aimia, Hyundai, The RAF, The Pentagon, the governments of the UK, US, Saudi, Oman and the Yemen for example. In 2010 he developed the world's first and only model and programme for developing emotional resilience across entire populations and organisations which has since become known as the Fear to Flow model which is the subject of his next book. In 2012 he drove a 1973 VW across six countries in Southern Africa whilst collecting money for charity and conducting on the ground charity work including developing emotional literature in children and orphans in Africa and a number of other activities. He is the author of The Ambiguity Advanatage: What great leaders are great at, published by Palgrave Macmillian. See more: About: About David Wikipedia: David's Wikipedia Page

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below

Leave a Reply: