Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted.
- Albert Einstein

A widely used management phrase is 'if you can measure it you can manage it'. There is, however, a tendency to attach too little importance to things that cannot be measured.

In part this can be attributed to the 'man with a hammer syndrome' - if the only tool that a man has is a hammer, then every problem will look like a nail. So, for example, an individual with great proficiency in numbers, and the use of an excel spreadsheet, will tend to bias an analysis towards data and its subsequent manipulation. And numbers may not be the heart of the issue.


This example by Charles Munger is recounted in 'Seeking Wisdom', Peter Bevelin:

The water system of California was designed...

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