Repeated ‘so whats’

For causal analysis and resolution, there’s the 5 Whys wherein we ask Why repeatedly to arrive at a root cause. In a similar vein, asking So what repeatedly can help “extract all important information implied by a fact.” This technique is called Appreciation and its function is to extract maximum info from facts.

An example presented in the MindTools web site:

Given the fact:  It rained heavily last night.

So what?
The ground will be wet.

So what?
It will turn into mud quickly.

So what?
If many troops and vehicles pass over the same ground, movement will be progressively slower and more difficult as the ground gets muddier and more difficult.

So what?
Where possible, stick to paved roads. Otherwise, expect movement to be much slower than normal.

Although one can deduce the conclusion without the use of a formal technique, “appreciation provides a framework within which you can extract information quickly, effectively and reliably.”

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