About the Four Kinds of Logical Reasoning
There are four key ways we humans apply logic to solve problems. But when it comes to solving complex strategic issues, some approaches are better than others. Let’s explore the four approaches:
Deductive Reasoning: Start out with a general statement, and examine whether this holds true for a specific scenario. Example: All humans are mortal. John is a human. Therefore, John is mortal.
Inductive Reasoning: Making generalized conclusions based on specific examples. Example: John pulls a coin out of a bag. It’s a penny. Therefore, all coins in the bag must be pennies. This kind of reasoning often leads to errors and should not be used in business strategy.
Converse Logic: Eliminate possible solutions to the problem by analyzing potential outcomes, then arrive at the outcome that has the highest likelihood. Converse logic can often lead to false statements. Example: If it snows, school is cancelled. Converse: if school is cancelled, it snows.
Reverse Logic: Begin with a conclusion, and identify the underlying conditions that must hold true for the conclusion to be logical. This is the most helpful logic for strategic planning. Example: what conditions must hold true for a competitor to launch a new product? They must hire new leaders, innovate new technology, and reach new distribution channels.