Why Smart Leaders Make Bad Decisions
Listening to unSILOed with Greg LaBlanc. Can we teach leaders to become better strategic decision makers? Our guest Zach Shore says we can. Part of the problem he says is that people get stuck in rigid mindsets, which often involve the failure to take alternative perspectives. In his books “Blunder: Why Smart People Make Bad Decisions,” and “sense of the enemy’ he aims to create a taxonomy of blunder causing mindsets and recount examples of effective strategic empathy through historical story telling. Greg and Zach discuss types of empathy, pattern breaking moments, definition of a “blunder,” an analysis of Putin, and the importance of truly understanding our enemies.
The best books on knowing your enemy
Five hand-picked books by Zachary Shore on Shepherd
Rapid Response: The Russian Invasion of Ukraine and the Consequences for NATO and the EU
Following the Russian invasion of the Ukraine, IES held a Rapid Response Event to discuss the immediate and long-term consequences of the invasion for NATO and the European Union. IES Director Jeroen Dewulf, IES Associate Director Akasemi Newsome, Sören Urbanksy, Head of Office of the German Historical Institute-Pacific Regional Office, and Zachary Shore, Professor of History at the Naval Postgraduate School and Senior Fellow at IES, analyzed the latest developments and took questions from the audience.
The views I express are purely my own and not those of the Naval Postgraduate School, the Department of Defense, or the US government.
Mention of my concept of strategic empathy by former U.S. National Security Advisor Lt. Gen. (Ret.) H. R. McMaster during his testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee
Full transcript (PDF), March 2, 2021
Write Now with Zachary Shore
Interview by Justin Cox for The Writing Cooperative, Medium, October 2020
How to fight Neo-Nazis
Interview on KCBS Radio, San Francisco, August 24, 2017.
What Would Trigger Conflict in Asia?
Panel discussion with Zachary Shore, Graham Allison, Patrick Cronin, June Teufel Dreyer, and Toshi Yoshihara at the annual conference of the Center for a New American Security, Washington, DC, June 28, 2017.
Lê Duẩn 'thắng Mỹ nhưng cái giá quá cao
Interview with BBC News Vietnamese Service on the anniversary of the fall of Saigon, April 30, 2017 (article in Vietnamese)
The Future of History
Dialogue - Breeding Bin Ladens
Breeding Bin Ladens
It's Your World, March 19, 2009.
How We Decide
Forum, with Dave Iverson, January 23, 2009.
Blunder: Why Smart People Make Bad Decisions
Tech Nation, with Dr. Moira Gunn, January 20, 2009.
Interview with Celeste Quinn
WILL, The Afternoon Magazine, december 19, 2008.
Strategic Empathy: Assessing Leadership Behavior
Zachary Shore speaks about A Sense of the Enemy with the online foreign policy magazine The Diplomat, May 10, 2016
Who is Mr. Putin?
Two leading experts on Russia at the Brookings Institution have used my concept of pattern-break analysis in their new book, Mr. Putin: Operative in the Kremlin. Read the excerpt.
The 38 biggest surprises of 2014
What experts, politicians, and cultural leaders didn't see coming. The Boston Globe, December 28, 2014
Empathy and Vladimir Putin
Interview about the implications of pattern-break analysis for President Putin’s actions. Kevin Hartnett, The Boston Globe, March 18, 2014.
High-tech effect on young Muslims
Kevin Howe, Monterey Herald, March 28, 2007.
Sam Whiting, San Francisco Chronicle, January 28, 2007.
Experts see no clear options for exiting Iraq
Anna Badkhen, San Francisco Chronicle, October 9, 2006.
My writings have been reviewed in numerous media outlets, some of which include: The Oprah Magazine, Newsweek, Vanity Fair, Kirkus, BusinessWeek.com, American Prospect, Library Journal, Choice Magazine, (named Outstanding Title of 2007), The Financial Times, Washington Monthly, The New Republic Online, and Foreign Affairs.
Sean Fear reviews ‘Provoking America: Le Duan and the Origins of the Vietnam War’
Sean Fear, 17 June 2016.
Foreign Affairs review of ‘A Sense of the Enemy’
Lawrence D. Freedman, November/December 2014.
O, The Oprah Magazine review of ‘Blunder’
Elaina Richardson, November 2008.
- Martha Stewart Living, Sirius XM Radio, July 22, 2009.
- Point of Enquiry, July 17, 2009.
- Book Notes, C-SPAN TV, September 3, 2007.
- Dialogue, Television show with host George Seay. Washington, DC, April 16, 2007. Guest for Dialogue's 900th interview.
- At Issue, Wisconsin Public Radio, host Gene Purcell, April 13, 2007.
- Alvin Z. Rubenstein Memorial Lecture, Foreign Policy Research Institute, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, April 12, 2007.
- World Affairs Council, Dallas, Texas, April 5, 2007.
- World Affairs Council, Fort Worth, Texas, April 5, 2007.
- World Affairs Council, Carmel Valley, California, March 27, 2007.
- Extension 720, Host Milt Rosenberg, Chicago Radio, WGN, January 19, 2007.
- Is Europe Breeding Bin Ladens?, Mother Jones Radio, 2007.
- Murder in the Netherlands, The Diane Rehm Show, National Public Radio, November 18, 2004.