Quotes by Russell Ackoff

A problem never exists in isolation; it is surrounded by other problems in space and time. The more of the context of a problem that a scientist can comprehend, the greater are his chances of finding a truly adequate solution.


It is far better to do the right thing wrong than to do the wrong thing right.


If there isn't joy in work, you won't get productivity, and you won't get quality.


The end of one problem may be the beginning of another.


Managers who don't know how to measure what they want settle for wanting what they can measure.


The basic managerial idea introduced by systems thinking, is that to manage a system effectively, you might focus on the interactions of the parts rather than their behavior taken separately.


Successful problem solving requires finding the right solution to the right problem. We fail more often because we solve the wrong problem than because we get the wrong solution to the right problem.


Errors of omission, lost opportunities, are generally more critical than errors of commission. Organizations fail or decline more frequently because of what they did not do than because of what they did.


The basic managerial idea introduced by systems thinking, is that to manage a system effectively, you might focus on the interactions of the parts rather than their behavior taken separately.


A system is more than the sum of its parts; it is an indivisible whole. It loses its essential properties when it is taken apart. The elements of a system may themselves be systems, and every system may be part of a larger system.