Use your 0908 card

Today's tip was submitted by Zach Fisher.

Even business owners are subject to inattentional blindness. Their vast experience allows them to perceive certain scenarios as impossible, improbable, etc. Sometimes their rationale is enough to convince me of the impossibility; other times, it is not. It is in these times that I'm compelled to use my '0908' card. What is the '0908' card?

It happened in September 2008, hence the '0908' moniker. Many of us lived blissfully ignorant of the complex financial forces at work around us. Our inattentional blindness was fed by the fruits of happy path living: nothing is going wrong NOW. It is not that we're stupid. We just had no compelling reason to suspect otherwise. It wasn't until activities in disparate areas, leading to a confluence of improbable circumstances, resulting in a global financial meltdown - that it became reasonable to suspect the 'out-of-left-field' scenarios.

You certainly don't want to overplay the '0908' card ( "What if a meteor hits our server farm on Feb. 29, 2012?" ). Nor do you want the conversation to degrade into a puddle of techno-babble. It may be more practical to assert things like, "I know we don't support Linux distros now, but what do you think about Ubuntu's growing market share?" or "Are your friends getting netbooks like mine are?". Enlightening business owners of those disparate dependencies - invisibly churning within their systems - may head off certain disaster downstream.
Bias, HeuristicsMichael Kelly