Blindspot Analysis

Avoiding Common "Fatal Flaws" in Decision Making

Blindspot Analysis

Avoiding decision making blindspots.

© iStockphoto

Why is it that so many carefully researched decisions go wrong?

One reason is that the decision-maker failed to consider key factors – with often disastrous consequences.

We often say things like, "I've got a bit of a blindspot when it comes to Anna's designs," acknowledging that there's an area of our decision-making where we're not quite as rigorous as we'd like to be.

However, even if we're aware of one personal blindspot, we may not realize how many others we have.

But how can we identify this sporadic failure in our decision making, given that it is, by nature, "hidden" in a blindspot?

The answer is to use Blindspot Analysis. This technique leads you through a systematic audit of your decision making. One way of doing this is to check your decision-making against a list of common blindspots. One such list was first drawn up by Michael Porter in his 1980 book "Competitive Strategy," and further developed by Gilad, Gordon and Sudit in their 1993 article "Identifying Gaps and Blindspots in Competitive Intelligence."


Blindspot Analysis isn't a decision making tool in itself. Rather, it is a safety net that you can use to check the quality of your decisions.

Common Types of Blindspot

The original work on categorizing blindspots focused on blindspots in strategy formulation. However, many of the blindspots that are found in strategic decision-making can occur in other types of decision-making, and this is what we focus on here:

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