Have you ever missed the woods for the trees? Have you ever been so focused on the details that you’ve missed the bigger picture? It’s a common mistake. Napoleon made it when he invaded Russia in 1812. He wanted to conquer Moscow and was so overjoyed when he did it that he forgot to figure out how his army would get supplies there or cope with the Russian winter. It couldn’t do either. Over 300,000 men died and Napoleon had to retreat. So he won the battle but lost the war.

Paying attention to details is a valuable quality, provided you don’t get hung up on them. The way you think impacts your daily life as well as your overall career. In this pathway, you’ll learn how to ignore minor bumps in the road, think holistically and look at things from a broad perspective. You may lose an occasional battle but you’ll always win the war. 

Thrive Skills are an essential set of cognitive, social and behavioral skills to enable our learners to continuously succeed, at every stage of their career.

Big-Picture Thinking is the ability to think beyond the details. Even though paying attention to detail is important to perform well, thinking about more than one solution to a problem. A big-picture thinker, who has a broader perspective, is a problem-solver, coming up with creative ideas.

n a professional setting, big-picture thinking skills are key because they lead to better opportunities and business success. Thinking of the long-term impact of business decisions safeguards organizations from setbacks. Big-picture thinking training can enable professionals to widen their horizon, focusing on strategic goals to be achieved over time. A leader who’s a big-picture thinker will likely be good at building a business that thrives even in the face of challenges.

Some examples of Big-Picture Thinking are creating lesson plans keeping in mind competitive examinations, conducting a trend analysis to study customer behavior before developing a product/service or investing in advertising to secure a product’s long-term market position. Going beyond the immediate needs of the organization, ensuring all possible roadblocks are accounted for are part of a big-picture mindset.

The ability to connect the dots, notice patterns and study trends is a big-picture thinker’s superpower. To develop a big-picture mindset, one needs to prioritize quality over quantity. Staying organized at work, focusing on the details without overlooking long-term effects and reflecting on mistakes to learn from them are some ways to develop Big-Picture Thinking.

Other Thrive Skills under THINK are Assimilating Knowledge, Overcoming Bias, Optimistic Outlook, Good Judgment and Ethical Clarity.

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