Practical Business Use of PCT in a business environment

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28.9.17 NZT)

I have spent some months reading and re-reading PCT and reading these posts
I'm still no further in unpacking PCT for a practical use.(that may well be
that I'm missing something important).Is it because I would have to use the
higher hierarchy levels and they have not been defined and measured???

Could someone help me by using my hypothetical practical example below as an
application for PCT.?

I'm doing a recruitment exercise I would like the measure some quality(s)
(attribute(s)) of a person with the PCT Theory. What would the specific
quality(s) be for the workplace and how can it be measured. Then how can the
robustness of the answer given by the applicant be tested.

Regards
Gavin

[From Dag Forssell 2008.02.28 16:30 PST]

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28.9.17 NZT)
<snip>
I'm doing a recruitment exercise I would like the measure some quality(s)
(attribute(s)) of a person with the PCT Theory. What would the specific
quality(s) be for the workplace and how can it be measured. Then how can the
robustness of the answer given by the applicant be tested.

Gavin, I wonder if you have read Casting Nets and Testing Specimens by Philip Runkel. I think it holds some answers for you.

The revised and updated paperback edition will be available at Amazon within two weeks, but your library may have the 1991 hardcover edition.

Best, Dag

[From Bruce Nevin (54523.2000)]

... Casting Nets and Testing Specimens by Philip Runkel ...
The revised and updated paperback edition will be available
at Amazon within two weeks...

Great news!

  /Bruce

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28. 14.09NZT)
Thank you I have very briefly read some excerpts and it looks very
interesting. Is this book PCT based?
Regards
Gavin

···

-----Original Message-----
From: Control Systems Group Network (CSGnet)
[mailto:CSGNET@LISTSERV.UIUC.EDU] On Behalf Of Dag Forssell
Sent: Thursday, 28 February 2008 1:29 p.m.
To: CSGNET@LISTSERV.UIUC.EDU
Subject: Re: Practical Business Use of PCT in a business environment

[From Dag Forssell 2008.02.28 16:30 PST]

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28.9.17 NZT)
<snip>
I'm doing a recruitment exercise I would like the measure some quality(s)
(attribute(s)) of a person with the PCT Theory. What would the specific
quality(s) be for the workplace and how can it be measured. Then how can

the

robustness of the answer given by the applicant be tested.

Gavin, I wonder if you have read Casting Nets and Testing Specimens
by Philip Runkel. I think it holds some answers for you.

The revised and updated paperback edition will be available at Amazon
within two weeks, but your library may have the 1991 hardcover edition.

Best, Dag

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28.14.27NZT)
I have found some second hand copies but I think I will wait for a new
version.

···

-----Original Message-----
From: Control Systems Group Network (CSGnet)
[mailto:CSGNET@LISTSERV.UIUC.EDU] On Behalf Of Bruce Nevin (bnevin)
Sent: Thursday, 28 February 2008 2:00 p.m.
To: CSGNET@LISTSERV.UIUC.EDU
Subject: Re: Practical Business Use of PCT in a business environment

[From Bruce Nevin (54523.2000)]

... Casting Nets and Testing Specimens by Philip Runkel ...
The revised and updated paperback edition will be available
at Amazon within two weeks...

Great news!

  /Bruce

[From Rick Marken (2008.02.27.1830)]

Gavin Ritz (2008.02.28.9.17 NZT)

Could someone help me by using my hypothetical practical example below as an
application for PCT.?

I'm doing a recruitment exercise I would like the measure some quality(s)
(attribute(s)) of a person with the PCT Theory. What would the specific
quality(s) be for the workplace and how can it be measured. Then how can the
robustness of the answer given by the applicant be tested.

I think PCT would suggest that you are probably on the wrong track
right out of the gate. People don't have qualities or attributes; they
control perceptions. If you want to know whether a person will fit a
particular workplace I would say that there are two things to do:
determine what perceptions a person must be able to control in order
to do the job properly and then see whether a person can control those
variables. If the workplace is an orchestra then see whether a person
can play an instrument, read music, etc. If the workplace is a
construction site then see whether a person can use tools, read a
blueprint, etc. Just see if people can control the perceptions they
will have to be able to control in order to accomplish what is to be
accomplished in the workplace.

Best

Rick

···

---
Richard S. Marken PhD
rsmarken@gmail.com

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28.15.32NZT)

Interleaving below.

An applicants Perceptions and behaviour are key in any recruitment process
so I think PCT should be able to make inroads here.

[From Rick Marken (2008.02.27.1830)]

Gavin Ritz (2008.02.28.9.17 NZT)

Could someone help me by using my hypothetical practical example below
as an
application for PCT.?

I'm doing a recruitment exercise I would like the measure some

quality(s)

(attribute(s)) of a person with the PCT Theory. What would the specific
quality(s) be for the workplace and how can it be measured. Then how can
the
robustness of the answer given by the applicant be tested.

I think PCT would suggest that you are probably on the wrong track
right out of the gate. People don't have qualities or attributes; they
control perceptions.

Okay fair enough, so let's rephrase that, they are viewed by others as an
attribute or quality.

If you want to know whether a person will fit a
particular workplace I would say that there are two things to do:
determine what perceptions a person must be able to control in order
to do the job properly and then see whether a person can control those
variables.

Okay, so how specifically can one do this?

If the workplace is an orchestra then see whether a person
can play an instrument, read music, etc. If the workplace is a
construction site then see whether a person can use tools, read a
blueprint, etc.

Okay, this is not helpful at all as this is what would be done in a matter
of course. Not knowing anything at all about PCT. I want to see what special
know-how PCT can bring to the table. Ie an all encompassing method of
assessment. As behaviour (skill, its application, action, response etc) is
what we are trying to assess in such a process.

Just see if people can control the perceptions they
will have to be able to control in order to accomplish what is to be
accomplished in the workplace.

Okay, I assume by work you mean "the exercise of discretion, judgement, and
decision making, within limits in carrying out a task, driven by values and
bringing skilled knowledge into play".

And this excludes the person's temperament. (Or amalgamated personal
perceptions)

So if you accept the definition of work in the workplace above.

How specifically would PCT be able to measure discretion or judgment or
decision making? The skilled knowledge is the easy part or say a negative
temperament.

Regards
Gavin

[From Fred Nickols (2008.02.28.0707 MST)]

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28.15.32NZT)

  Rick Marken:

>I think PCT would suggest that you are probably on the wrong track
>right out of the gate. People don't have qualities or attributes; they
>control perceptions.

  Gavin:
> Okay fair enough, so let's rephrase that, they are viewed by others as an

attribute or quality.

I think I need to clarify your comment above, Gavin. It reads to me as
though you are saying that the perceptions people control (per Rick) are
viewed by other people as attributes or qualities. That seems to me to
confuse the common use of "perception" with its more technical use in PCT.

Example:
If I say I have a perception of salespeople as rude, intrusive, aggressive
people and behave toward them in ways that others observing me might label
as stand-offish or dismissive, I can see how my "stand-offishness" or
"dismissiveness" might be termed a quality or attribute of mine. However,
that is the common use of perception.

Using the same example, if I have a reference signal that comprises a low
tolerance for interactions with salespeople and I perceive such interactions
as initiating or initiated or imminent (in other words, current conditions
are moving away from my preferred or established reference condition), I
might well act in ways that result in me no longer perceiving such a
likelihood or occurrence. In this case, my perception is of observed or
perceived conditions in relation to my reference conditions. No observer is
privy to these and no one is likely to identify them as attributes or
qualities on my part.

However, let's say that I am the kind of person who some might say is wound
too tightly (i.e., has little tolerance for the slightest deviation from my
preferred reference conditions). Charitable people might say I have high
standards. Over time, observations would reveal this tightness of control
and that might well be termed a quality or attribute on my part. But that
would take time, systematic observations, and careful interpretation.

So, could you get at what most people call attributes or qualities via some
mechanism rooted in PCT? I think so but it would call for a very careful
design, some testing and proving of that design, and a thoughtful selection
and translation of targeted qualities and attributes into PCT-based and
PCT-testable propositions.

What would that buy you? I think it could tell you a lot about what people
control, how well and how tightly but it would also require a shift away
from attributes and qualities as a selection mechanism. That would be a
good thing because, as you no doubt know, attributes and qualities are just
that - attributions made by others.

Regards,

Fred Nickols
nickols@att.net

[From Rick Marken (2008.02.28.1120)]

It's my birthday, by the way. So those of you who want to can
celebrate, and the rest of you can just mutter profanities under your
breath;-) This day (2/28) was a very bad one for reactionaries (one of
whom, William F. Buckley, recently logged out). It produced not only
me but also liberal economist and NY Times columnist Paul Krugman.

Gavin Ritz (2008.02.28.15.32NZT)--

Rick Marken (2008.02.27.1830)

>If you want to know whether a person will fit a
>particular workplace I would say that there are two things to do:
>determine what perceptions a person must be able to control in order
>to do the job properly and then see whether a person can control those
>variables.

Okay, so how specifically can one do this?

I was think of the usual kind of screening process, using exams and
tests. PCT could possible make these tests more useful by providing a
way (the test for the controlled variable) to make these tests more
precise, focusing on only those variables that have been determine to
be the ones that should be controlled.

>If the workplace is an orchestra then see whether a person
>can play an instrument, read music, etc. If the workplace is a
>construction site then see whether a person can use tools, read a
>blueprint, etc.

Okay, this is not helpful at all as this is what would be done in a matter
of course. Not knowing anything at all about PCT.

I agree. But you didn't suggest doing it, so maybe PCT could have
helped you in this case. I agree that people can do a lot of good
things without knowing PCT. I think PCT is really only useful for
people whose intuitions lead them in a dysfunctional direction, in
terms of dealing with people.

I want to see what special know-how PCT can bring to the table.

The only know-how PCT brings to the table is the model itself.

>Just see if people can control the perceptions they
>will have to be able to control in order to accomplish what is to be
>accomplished in the workplace.

Okay, I assume by work you mean "the exercise of discretion, judgement, and
decision making, within limits in carrying out a task, driven by values and
bringing skilled knowledge into play".

No. By "work" I mean "control". Working in an orchestra involves
control of acoustical variables, of relationships between visual
symbols and acoustic variables, of loudness dynamics, etc. etc. Words
like "discretion", "judgment", "decision making", "values" and
"skills" are descriptions of perceptions (states of perceptual
variables) that it may be necessary to control in certain kinds of
work. But they are pretty vague descriptions; you would want to try to
get a more precise definition of these perceptions if the job really
requires that they be controlled.

So if you accept the definition of work in the workplace above.

How specifically would PCT be able to measure discretion or judgment or
decision making?

I accept that definition of work only for work that involves control
of those particular kinds of variables. PCT doesn't tell you how to
measure discretion or judgment or decision making because these are
not concepts in PCT. If discretion, for example, is thought to be a
perception to be controlled then PCT would just suggest that you would
have to do something like "the test for the controlled variable" in
order to get a nice, clear definition of what that variable _is_. But
discretion is probably a very complex variable that is measurable only
by someone who can perceive discretion themselves watching to see if
someone can control it as well. I think that's what is done in job
interviews; the interviewer tries to ask questions which would will be
answered in certain ways of the interviewee is controlling for certain
variables.PCT might be able to make this process a bit more precise
but when you're dealing with these very high level controlled
variables I don't think PCT can make things much more precise than
they already are.

Best

Rick

···

--
Richard S. Marken PhD
rsmarken@gmail.com

[From Dick Robertson,2008.02.28.1545CST]

-> [From Rick Marken (2008.02.28.1120)]

It’s my birthday, by the way. So those of you who want to can
celebrate,

Great, I’ll go out and drink a beer tonight. Where shall I send the bill?

whom, William F. Buckley, recently logged out).

Yeah, I used to enjoy his wit, even though I never agreed with any of his values. But I was disappointed to find out yesterday what a bigot he had been.

Best,

Dick R

[From Rick Marken (2008.02.28.1415)]

Dick Robertson,2008.02.28.1545CST)--

>Rick Marken (2008.02.28.1120)--
>
> It's my birthday, by the way. So those of you who want to can
> celebrate,

Great, I'll go out and drink a beer tonight. Where shall I send the bill?

Send the invoice to:

CSG
10459 Holman Ave
LA, CA 90024

I consider that an example of supporting PCT;-)

Best

Rick (CSG Treasurer)

···

--
Richard S. Marken PhD
rsmarken@gmail.com

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.29.17.38 NZT)
Fred
Okay I get your argument. Let's use sales people as an example.
This is what I would normally do and from years of experience I know more or
less what a motivated successful sales person requires. Here are some
specific criteria.
Role complexity: able to plan out at least 1 year, so level of internal
logic required 1 year. (Depends on industry, in large capital equipment it
could be 2 years):
Motivations: money or possessions, recognition and achievement, autonomy,
Behaviour: Goal directed, proactive (ie prefers doing rather than
considering), process orientated, externally motivated by targets, move
towards targets not away from pain.
Skilled-knowledge: sales process, plus say 2 years of proven experience
Other: good verbal communication, gets on well with people, positive
temperament.

How would PCT deal with say just one of these criteria?

Regards
Gavin

[From Fred Nickols (2008.02.28.0707 MST)]

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.28.15.32NZT)

  Rick Marken:

>I think PCT would suggest that you are probably on the wrong track
>right out of the gate. People don't have qualities or attributes; they
>control perceptions.

  Gavin:
> Okay fair enough, so let's rephrase that, they are viewed by others as an

attribute or quality.

I think I need to clarify your comment above, Gavin. It reads to me as
though you are saying that the perceptions people control (per Rick) are
viewed by other people as attributes or qualities. That seems to me to
confuse the common use of "perception" with its more technical use in PCT.

Example:
If I say I have a perception of salespeople as rude, intrusive, aggressive
people and behave toward them in ways that others observing me might label
as stand-offish or dismissive, I can see how my "stand-offishness" or
"dismissiveness" might be termed a quality or attribute of mine. However,
that is the common use of perception.

Using the same example, if I have a reference signal that comprises a low
tolerance for interactions with salespeople and I perceive such interactions
as initiating or initiated or imminent (in other words, current conditions
are moving away from my preferred or established reference condition), I
might well act in ways that result in me no longer perceiving such a
likelihood or occurrence. In this case, my perception is of observed or
perceived conditions in relation to my reference conditions. No observer is
privy to these and no one is likely to identify them as attributes or
qualities on my part.

However, let's say that I am the kind of person who some might say is wound
too tightly (i.e., has little tolerance for the slightest deviation from my
preferred reference conditions). Charitable people might say I have high
standards. Over time, observations would reveal this tightness of control
and that might well be termed a quality or attribute on my part. But that
would take time, systematic observations, and careful interpretation.

So, could you get at what most people call attributes or qualities via some
mechanism rooted in PCT? I think so but it would call for a very careful
design, some testing and proving of that design, and a thoughtful selection
and translation of targeted qualities and attributes into PCT-based and
PCT-testable propositions.

What would that buy you? I think it could tell you a lot about what people
control, how well and how tightly but it would also require a shift away
from attributes and qualities as a selection mechanism. That would be a
good thing because, as you no doubt know, attributes and qualities are just
that - attributions made by others.

Regards,

Fred Nickols
nickols@att.net

[From Fred Nickols (2008.02.29.0736 MST)]
    

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.29.17.38 NZT)
Fred
Okay I get your argument. Let's use sales people as an example.
This is what I would normally do and from years of experience I know more or
less what a motivated successful sales person requires. Here are some
specific criteria.
Role complexity: able to plan out at least 1 year, so level of internal
logic required 1 year. (Depends on industry, in large capital equipment it
could be 2 years):
Motivations: money or possessions, recognition and achievement, autonomy,
Behaviour: Goal directed, proactive (ie prefers doing rather than
considering), process orientated, externally motivated by targets, move
towards targets not away from pain.
Skilled-knowledge: sales process, plus say 2 years of proven experience
Other: good verbal communication, gets on well with people, positive
temperament.

How would PCT deal with say just one of these criteria?

Well, I'm not sure I can answer your question. I think PCT offers a darn good explanation of how people who do and can do those things get them done but I'm not at all clear how PCT might "deal" with those "criteria."

That said, I can speak to one of them (and maybe draw a tentative conclusion from that).

I've told before on this list the little story of the Yellow Pages salesman who used to take sick days when not sick - and do so in the middle of a hot streak. This puzzled his manager who asked me to look into it. To make a long story short, I discovered that the structure of the compensation system was such that the salesman was using that structure to manage his income stream; specifically, he was keeping it stable in the face of fluctuating sales. (Sick time and commissions were paid on a different schedule and it was this schedule that he was manipulating.)

That little story speaks to one of your motivations criteria above: money. Salespeople are commonly thought to be motivated by money and the more the better. Yet, this salesperson was seeking to maintain a stable income stream, not maximize it or get more. So, perhaps one way PCT might deal with those "criteria" you list is to sharpen it, to be clearer about what people are controlling for when they do or don't do the things listed or display or don't display those qualities and attributes. Surely, sharper criteria should lead to better assessment and recruiting practices.

Regards,

Fred Nickols
Toolmaker to Knowledge Workers
www.skullworks.com
nickols@att.net

(Gavin Ritz 2008.03.01.10.57NZT)

Fred

Surely, sharper criteria should lead to better assessment and recruiting
practices.

Your comment above, that's the whole point of having criteria like the ones
I mentioned.

I want to be able to apply PCT in this simple area and it seems to fall flat
very quickly, not because I think it's not a good theory but because I seem
unable to apply it to such an example where control of such perceptions are
paramount. So I know that this person wants to control his/her perception
and I'm looking for those that match those criteria.

Explanations are not really good enough, it's matching the theory where the
rubber meets the road is what's important. "So I can apply this in this
context and get the same results again." Is what I'm looking for?

In your example below the sales person (very good example actually because I
was a Yellowpages Human Resources manager) who was looking for an optimal
solution should not have got through the screening process because the
control of his perceptions does not match the criteria required for an
effective salesperson.

I suspect that some of these criteria could lie in the higher levels of the
hierarchy of perceptions as mentioned in PCT. It looks like a lot of work
needs to be done here to unpack those levels of hierarchy. I'm having a
re-read of a re-read of a re-read of them again. They seem very mixed up, I
do in sense I suppose measure some of them like, systems, principles,
categories, sequences and programms.

Why has there been so small a response to my question of a specific
application?

Why doesn't an application in such a simple area of use garner any interest?

Regards
Gavin

[From Fred Nickols (2008.02.29.0736 MST)]
    

(Gavin Ritz 2008.02.29.17.38 NZT)
Fred
Okay I get your argument. Let's use sales people as an example.
This is what I would normally do and from years of experience I know more

or

less what a motivated successful sales person requires. Here are some
specific criteria.
Role complexity: able to plan out at least 1 year, so level of internal
logic required 1 year. (Depends on industry, in large capital equipment it
could be 2 years):
Motivations: money or possessions, recognition and achievement, autonomy,
Behaviour: Goal directed, proactive (ie prefers doing rather than
considering), process orientated, externally motivated by targets, move
towards targets not away from pain.
Skilled-knowledge: sales process, plus say 2 years of proven experience
Other: good verbal communication, gets on well with people, positive
temperament.

How would PCT deal with say just one of these criteria?

Well, I'm not sure I can answer your question. I think PCT offers a darn
good explanation of how people who do and can do those things get them done
but I'm not at all clear how PCT might "deal" with those "criteria."

That said, I can speak to one of them (and maybe draw a tentative conclusion
from that).

I've told before on this list the little story of the Yellow Pages salesman
who used to take sick days when not sick - and do so in the middle of a hot
streak. This puzzled his manager who asked me to look into it. To make a
long story short, I discovered that the structure of the compensation system
was such that the salesman was using that structure to manage his income
stream; specifically, he was keeping it stable in the face of fluctuating
sales. (Sick time and commissions were paid on a different schedule and it
was this schedule that he was manipulating.)

That little story speaks to one of your motivations criteria above: money.
Salespeople are commonly thought to be motivated by money and the more the
better. Yet, this salesperson was seeking to maintain a stable income
stream, not maximize it or get more. So, perhaps one way PCT might deal
with those "criteria" you list is to sharpen it, to be clearer about what
people are controlling for when they do or don't do the things listed or
display or don't display those qualities and attributes. Surely, sharper
criteria should lead to better assessment and recruiting practices.

Regards,

Fred Nickols
Toolmaker to Knowledge Workers
www.skullworks.com
nickols@att.net

[From Fred Nickols (2008.02.29.1702 MST)]
    

(Gavin Ritz 2008.03.01.10.57NZT)

<snip>

In your example below the sales person (very good example actually because I
was a Yellowpages Human Resources manager) who was looking for an optimal
solution should not have got through the screening process because the
control of his perceptions does not match the criteria required for an
effective salesperson.

Au contraire, Monsieur Ritz. The reason the sales manager asked me to look into the odd pattern of sick days on the part of the sales rep in question was precisely because that sales rep was one of the manager's best. The sales manager would have happily had a dozen more just like him.

Why doesn't an application in such a simple area of use garner any interest?

Perhaps because your request puts PCT in the difficult position of being perceived as a potential solution to a problem to which PCT is not the solution - or at least not yet.

Let's go to a different example. Let's use Rick Marken's outfielder (i.e., fly ball catching) example. Rick can explain in great and convincing detail - and in PCT terms - just how it is that an outfielder catches a fly ball. But, you want to tackle the problem of selecting people who can do a dandy job of catching fly balls. As Rick indicated earlier, problem the simplest and the best way of doing that is to test 'em and see if they can. But, maybe you want to go deeper and select people who have the promise of being able to become good fly ball catchers (or salespeople). Now you have to start decomposing the behavior of catching fly balls - probably into things like coordination, the ability to run, good vision, etc, etc, and testing those independently. In short, you would select people who have what we all call "the makings" of a good this or that or the other. In none of these cases do you need PCT. PCT says, basically, "Look, people do X or Y or Z because X or!
  Y or Z
helps them achieve and maintain some reference signal at a prescribed or targeted state." If someone wants to be a really great fly ball catcher but their lower level systems (e.g., those concerned with configurations and transitions and probably programs) don't function very well, they're never going to make a good outfielder.

In short, PCT tells you a lot about how behavior works but it doesn't tell you a lot about how to develop or promote or encourage this or that behavior.

Bottom line: I think you've got PCT positioned as a solution to a problem to which it is not in fact a solution.

···

--
Fred Nickols
Toolmaker to Knowledge Workers
www.skullworks.com
nickols@att.net

(Gavin Ritz 2008.03.01 14.17NZT)

Fred

Bottom line: I think you've got PCT positioned as a solution to a problem
to which it is not in fact a solution.

What's the point then in PCT then if it can't provide a simple solution to a
set of simple behaviours, is it not a theory of behaviours?

I'm confused with these responses, Am I missing something or have I just hit
the limit capability of this theory, if so a lot of work needs to be done on
it.

Regards
Gavin

[From Martin Taylor 2008.02.29.23.03]

(Gavin Ritz 2008.03.01 14.17NZT)

Fred

Bottom line: I think you've got PCT positioned as a solution to a problem
to which it is not in fact a solution.

What's the point then in PCT then if it can't provide a simple solution to a
set of simple behaviours, is it not a theory of behaviours?

I'm confused with these responses, Am I missing something or have I just hit
the limit capability of this theory, if so a lot of work needs to be done on
it.

Yes, it's been acknowledged for as long as I've been on CSGnet (16 years now) that a lot of work needs to be done on PCT. Conventional psychology has had over 150 years and thousands of people doing the research in that framework; PCT has had no more than half a century, if that, and from single digits to tens of people working on the research. PCT research really has to begin at the basics, because the underlying premises of research in conventional psychology are as valid as is the theory of phlogiston for understanding thermodynamics.

The thermodynamics we now understand to be reasonably valid has been around for about as long as conventional psychology. Steam engines were being built perhaps a century before that, and gasoline engines for the last 130 years or so, but only in the last maybe 30-40 years has thermodynamic theory been really valuable in building much better engines.

When you made your initial query, I was tempted to respond, but then I thought it wouldn't be worth while, because my response was that skilled interviewers doubtless have many techniques that have allowed them to find people well suited to the jobs for which they are applying. PCT might perhaps give a few clues, but is unlikely at this stage of its development to provide a cookbook way of conducting a truly effective job interview. I could be wrong, and perhaps the issue is only that of the few people involved in serious PCT-based research, none have addressed this particular problem in a serious way. Maybe you will be the one to start?

What clues might PCT give? I can only hazard a few guesses. Perhaps it might be useful for the interviewer to try to apply "The Test" for a controlled variable at a fairly high level. For example: What do applicants want to think about themselves, and what do they want others to think about them? Do these mesh (Bill Powers's comment in the other thread is relevant here [Bill Powers (2008.02.29.1348 MST)]: "If calling attention to a norm that seems (reliably) to govern a person's actions results in a person's disavowing it, the implication is that there is a second norm in conflict with the first one." The first one may be the self-perception that the person is controlling with one reference value, the other the perception of how other people perceive him, being controlled at a different reference value.

The interviewer might want to apply "The Test" at different levels, to see how the applicant might deal with the kinds of disturbance that might be encountered on the job -- but I imagine that's what good interviewers do anyway, without knowing that it would be supported by a knowledge of PCT. Perhaps the interviewr could probe for signs of conflicts that are not evident on the surface. I really don't know, but these seem to me to be possible places where knowledge of PCT might help.

As I said, people made good engines and motors before the science of thermodynamics was used to make better ones. Skilled artisans of the job interview will select good applicants for a long time before a knowledge of PCT will enable good interviewers to be reliably trained.

Sorry. Maybe I am too pessimistic. I hope so.

Martin

[From Rick Marken (2008.03.01.1120 PST)]

Martin Taylor (2008.02.29.23.03)--

>Gavin Ritz (2008.03.01 14.17NZT)

>What's the point then in PCT then if it can't provide a simple solution to a
>set of simple behaviours, is it not a theory of behaviours?
>
>I'm confused with these responses, Am I missing something or have I just hit
>the limit capability of this theory, if so a lot of work needs to be done on
>it.

Yes, it's been acknowledged for as long as I've been on CSGnet (16
years now) that a lot of work needs to be done on PCT. Conventional
psychology has had over 150 years and thousands of people doing the
research in that framework; PCT has had no more than half a century,
if that, and from single digits to tens of people working on the
research.

I can't think of more than 7 people who have worked on PCT research.
It's definitely been single digits since I've been involved in it
(about 30 years now).

As I said, people made good engines and motors before the science of
thermodynamics was used to make better ones. Skilled artisans of the
job interview will select good applicants for a long time before a
knowledge of PCT will enable good interviewers to be reliably trained.

Good point, Martin. But as you and I know, PCT actually does provide
the complete solution to Gavin's problem (as well as to all management
and human problems; we have even determined the site of the Ark of the
Covenant). But we don't give out these secret for free.

As treasurer of CSG, I give you permission, Martin, to tell Gavin
where to mail the check. Then I'll mail him the solution as well as
his secret decoder ring;-)

Best

Rick

···

--
Richard S. Marken PhD
rsmarken@gmail.com

(Gavin Ritz 2008.03.02.10.15NZT)

Rick
Ok where do I post the cheque?

I have looked carefully at the levels, this is what I think.

Categories: is an or-or logic descriptor and I do measure this, but it is
required to be quantified to a time (in months or weeks). This is like
nominal numbers

Sequences can also be quantified, this too is a logic descriptor (and-and)
and can be linked to a time (also in months and years), it is like the
ordinal numbering ie a fixed order.

Programmes can also be quantified, this too is a logic descriptor (if-then)
and can also be linked to a time in years, and it's a new level of logic
Linked to a quantified time. This is like interval scale numbering. John
Holland's Echo programme is this type of thinking.

Systems concept is also a level of logic and is called bi-conditional
parallel variables (like if-and-only-if) in parallel. Also linked and
quantified as a time. This is similar to ratio scale numbering. This is like
Systems Thinking methodology logic.

Principles can also be measured, that's what I called internal value
analysis and modelled using a word sort linked to the "error" or what I
called the fundamental formula, I sent you this paper that I measure
organisation capability and human intrinsic values. What can't be measured
here is trust and honesty.

For example I can analyse what level you are using by going through the
logic descriptors of your text in email conversations.

Most times in these emails it was unpacked to a category which is not useful
in the type of method I was asking for. I was not talking about catching
balls or playing music that is at a very low hierarchy level. When
knowledge, discretion, judgements, and decision making is required the
levels immediately pop up to systems concepts, if a further level of
abstraction is required even more discretion is required.

Regards
Gavin

[From Rick Marken (2008.03.01.1120 PST)]

Martin Taylor (2008.02.29.23.03)--

>Gavin Ritz (2008.03.01 14.17NZT)

>What's the point then in PCT then if it can't provide a simple solution

to a

>set of simple behaviours, is it not a theory of behaviours?
>
>I'm confused with these responses, Am I missing something or have I just

hit

>the limit capability of this theory, if so a lot of work needs to be

done on

>it.

Yes, it's been acknowledged for as long as I've been on CSGnet (16
years now) that a lot of work needs to be done on PCT. Conventional
psychology has had over 150 years and thousands of people doing the
research in that framework; PCT has had no more than half a century,
if that, and from single digits to tens of people working on the
research.

I can't think of more than 7 people who have worked on PCT research.
It's definitely been single digits since I've been involved in it
(about 30 years now).

As I said, people made good engines and motors before the science of
thermodynamics was used to make better ones. Skilled artisans of the
job interview will select good applicants for a long time before a
knowledge of PCT will enable good interviewers to be reliably trained.

Good point, Martin. But as you and I know, PCT actually does provide
the complete solution to Gavin's problem (as well as to all management
and human problems; we have even determined the site of the Ark of the
Covenant). But we don't give out these secret for free.

As treasurer of CSG, I give you permission, Martin, to tell Gavin
where to mail the check. Then I'll mail him the solution as well as
his secret decoder ring;-)

Best

Rick

···

--
Richard S. Marken PhD
rsmarken@gmail.com

[From Rick Marken (2008.03.01.1515 PST)]

Gavin Ritz (2008.03.02.10.15NZT) --

Ok where do I post the cheque?

Shhh. Let's handle this off line. Bill thinks there's something wrong
with people who take bribes;-)

I have looked carefully at the levels, this is what I think.

The levels were proposed as a basis for further research. We don't
know for sure if those are the actual levels or even if there are
levels. The small amount of research we've is consistent with the idea
of levels and I have done some work to show that control of sequences
takes place at a higher level than control of transitions (movement)
which takes place at a higher level than control of configuration.

But I don't see what the levels have to do with what you are trying to
do. I don't even know what you are trying to do. All I know is that
you don't think PCT can help you do it and I'm inclined to agree.
Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. Which reminds me -- I've got to go
out and get some cigars. I don't care for Republicans but I sure like
to live like 'em'-)

Best

Rick

···

--
Richard S. Marken PhD
rsmarken@gmail.com