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Audit: Assessing Your Firm's Vulnerability to Mindlessness

How well do the following statements characterize your organization? For example, for each item, circle the number that best reflects your conclusion: 1 = not at all, 2 = to some extent, 3 = a great deal.

1. Exceptions rarely arise in our work.
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

2. We encounter the same kinds of situations and problems day after day.
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

3. People in this organization have trouble getting all the information they need to do their work.
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

4. People are expected to perform their jobs in a particular way without deviations.
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

5. People often work under severe production pressures (time, costs, growth, profits, or other).
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

6. Pressures often lead people to cut corners.
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

7. People have little discretion to resolve unexpected problems as they arise.
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

8. Many people lack the skills and expertise they need to act on the unexpected problems that arise.
Not at all
To some extent
A great deal

Scoring: Add the numbers. If you score higher than 16, the current potential for mindlessness is high, and you should be actively considering how you can immediately improve the capability for mindfulness. If you score between 10 and 16, the potential for mindlessness is moderate. Scores lower than 10 suggest a lower vulnerability to mindlessness.