by Sunil Bali, 15-12-13

The most successful people demonstrate a capacity for vuja dé.

We’ve all experienced déjà vu – looking at an unfamiliar situation and feeling like you’ve seen it before. Vuja dé is the flip side of that – looking at a familiar situation as if you’ve never seen it before.

London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children, renowned for its cardiac care, struggled with poorly designed "handoffs" that resulted in errors, complications, even deaths.

So Dr. Martin Elliot, Head of Cardiac Surgery, and Dr. Allan Goldman, Head of Paediatric Intensive Care, studied high-powered professionals who were better than anyone at organizing handoffs – the pit crew of Ferrari’s Formula One racing team.

The doctors and the pit crew worked together at the team’s home base in Modena, Italy, in the pits of the British Grand Prix, and in the Great Ormond Street operating room and intensive-care ward. Members of the pit crew were struck by how clumsy the hospital’s handoff process was – not to mention the fact that it often lacked a clear leader.

In Formula One races, a so-called "lollipop man" wields an easy-to-see paddle and calls the shots.

They were also surprised by how noisy the process was. Ferrari pit crews operate largely in silence, despite (or because of) the roar of engines around them. As a result of one of the more unlikely collaborations in modern medicine, the hospital redesigned its handoff procedures and sharply reduced medical errors.

The key message, which is highlighted in former Intel strategist Cynthia Barton Rabe’s book, The Innovation Killer is this:

Don’t let what you know limit what you can imagine.


Some classroom howlers …..

Q: How does a mezzo soprano differ from a soprano?

A: One has cheese on it.


Q: Give an example of a Sonata?

A: Frank Sonata


Q: What are the key features of baroque music?

A: It can’t be fixed


Q: In what ways could the "first past the post" electoral system considered to be undemocratic?

A: It’s not very fair to people who can’t run very fast.


One for the men …..

And one for the women …..

A couple is lying in bed. The man says,

"I am going to make you the happiest woman in the world."

The woman replies, "I’ll miss you…"